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Jun 11, 2020

North American markets plunge, post biggest declines since March

BNN Bloomberg's closing bell update: June 11, 2020

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4:20 p.m. ET: North American markets plunge, post biggest declines since March

North American equity markets plunged Thursday, closing out the trading way with their biggest declines since March as concerns mount of a second wave of the COVID-19 virus outbreak despite the reopening of global economies. Markets were also weighed down from some gloomy commentary late Wednesday from U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 4.14 per cent, its worst showing since March 27, while all three major U.S. indices posting their largest declines since March 16. The S&P 500 was down 5.89 per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average 6.90 per cent moved lower and the Nasdaq Composite Index shed 5.27 per cent of its value.

All eleven TSX subgroups closed in negative territory on Wednesday, with health care, energy and utilities posting the largest declines. Only five of the composite’s 229 constituents traded in positive territory.

On the Dow, not a single one of the index’s 30 members finished the day higher. Boeing Co. took 229 points off the table all on its own. On the S&P 500, only a single one of the index’s 505 constituents – grocer Kroger Co. – clung to positive territory, up a paltry 0.4 per cent.

Those growth concerns hammered oil prices, sending U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate 8.2 per cent lower to US$36.35 per barrel. Alberta’s Western Canadian Select fell 9.0 per cent to trade at US$27.60 per barrel.

Safe havens gained, sending the Japanese Yen, U.S. dollar and U.S. Treasuries higher. That combination of the U.S. dollar strength and oil’s weakness hit the Canadian dollar, with the loonie falling more than a full cent against its American counterpart to 73.42 cents U.S.

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12:30 p.m. ET: North American equity markets plunge amid second-wave virus concerns

North American equity markets plunged through midday Thursday, bringing the recent rally to a screeching halt amid concerns a second wave of the COVID-19 virus could hammer output as economies gradually reopen.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 3.3 per cent, the S&P 500 dropped four per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged five per cent and the Nasdaq Composite Index shed 3.4 per cent of its value.

If the declines hold, it would mark the third straight day of losses for the TSX, S&P 500 and Dow.

In Toronto, all 11 TSX subgroups were in negative territory, with health care, energy and real estate posting the largest percentage declines. 213 of the index’s 229 constituents were in negative territory.

Those concerns over a potential for yet another economic fallout hammered oil prices, sending U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate more than 10 per cent lower to trade just shy of US$35.50 per barrel. Alberta’s Western Canadian Select dropped 8.51 per cent to US$27.75 per barrel, though Canadian crude is only priced a handful of times per day.

Safe-haven assets gained, pushing the Japanese yen, U.S. dollar and U.S. treasuries higher.

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9:40 a.m. ET: North American markets tumble on Fed, virus fears

North American equity markets opened sharply lower Thursday, as concerns mount over a second wave of the COVID-19 virus and sobering commentary from U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index and Nasdaq Composite Index both fell a little more than two per cent, the S&P 500 fell about 2.75 per cent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed more than three per cent of its value.

Oil prices also took a significant hit over concerns a second wave of the pandemic could grind economic activity back to a halt, with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate down more than seven per cent to US$36.75 per barrel. Alberta’s Western Canadian Select fell 8.77 per cent to US$27.67 per barrel.

The risk-off sentiment sent investors flocking to tradition safe havens, lifting the likes of the Japanese Yen, the U.S. Dollar and U.S. treasuries.

The Canadian dollar fell about half a cent against its American counterpart to trade at 74.07 cents U.S.

 

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