Stocks sink again, leaving Wall Street with worst week since 2008

Stocks sank again during another wild day, extending a rout that left Wall Street with its worst week since October 2008.

The market clawed back much of its intraday losses in the last 15 minutes of trading. Bond prices soared as investors sought safety, pushing yields to record lows.

The stock swoon is being driven by fear that the coronavirus outbreak will derail the global economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 357 points, or 1.4%, to 25,409.

The S&P 500 lost 24 points, or 0.8%, to 2,954. The benchmark index has lost 13% since hitting a record high 10 days ago.

The Nasdaq rose 1 point, to 8,567.

The virus outbreak has been shutting down industrial centers, emptying shops and severely crimping travel all over the world. More companies are warning investors that their finances will take a hit because of disruptions to supply chains and sales. Governments are taking increasingly drastic measures as they scramble to contain the virus.

The market’s losses moderated after the Federal Reserve released a statement saying it stood ready to help the economy if needed. Investors increasingly expect the Fed to cut rates at its next policy meeting in mid-March.

The rout has knocked every major index into what market watchers call a “correction,” or a fall of 10% or more from a peak. The last time that occurred was in late 2018, as a tariff war with China was escalating. Market watchers have said for months that stocks were heavily overpriced and long overdue for another pullback.

Financial, health care and technology stocks were among the biggest losers in Friday’s broad market slide. Energy, the worst performing sector this year, held up best.

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