Wall Street tumbles as China trade tensions add to Covid-19 American jobless woes

Wall Street’s main indexes were lower in choppy trading and European indices tumbled, as renewed worries about China-US trade relations added to fears of an extended economic downturn due to the virus outbreak.
Wall Street tumbles as China trade tensions add to Covid-19 American jobless woes

US President Donald Trump departs after speaking about the coronavirus during a press briefing in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday. Picture: AP
US President Donald Trump departs after speaking about the coronavirus during a press briefing in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday. Picture: AP

Wall Street’s main indexes were lower in choppy trading and European indices tumbled, as renewed worries about China-US trade relations added to fears of an extended economic downturn due to the virus outbreak.

President Donald Trump said he was very disappointed with China over its failure to contain the novel coronavirus, saying the worldwide pandemic cast a pall over his US-China trade deal.

This further rattled markets after Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell’s somber outlook on the economy and US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci’s warning that the virus was not yet under control.

Economic readings continued to reflect the pain caused by the pandemic, as data showed 2.98 million Americans filed for state unemployment benefits last week, higher than economists’ estimates.

The focus now turns to retail sales data on Friday that will show the impact of stay-at-h

“Markets are repricing the risk around economic reopening and the eventual economic normalization. There’s an understanding that the timetable may be longer than we initially thought,” said Yousef Abbasi, global market strategist at Intl FCStone.

Wall Street’s fear gauge, the volatility index rose for the third straight day, hovering near a 10-day high. The three main stock indexes were headed for a third straight day of losses.

Beaten-down US travel stocks tumbled again with the S&P 1500 airlines index down 8% and hotel operator Marriott International off 1.2%.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd shed 1.6% as it swung to a quarterly loss.

- Medha Singh and Ambar Warrick Reuters. Additional reporting Irish Examiner

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