US stocks attempted to rally on Friday (20th March), but failed, concluding one of the most volatile weeks on Wall Street ever as investors grapple with mounting fears over the coronavirus’ economic blow, CNBC reported
At the end of the session on Friday, The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 913.21 points lower, or more than 4%, at 19,173.98 after rallying more than 400 points earlier in the day. The S&P 500 slid 4.3% to 2,304.92. The Nasdaq Composite closed 3.8% lower at 6,879.52 after jumping more than 2%.
The Dow dropped more than 17% for the week, its biggest one-week fall since October 2008. The S&P 500 lost more than 13% week to date after dropping another 11.5% last week. The Nasdaq fell 12.6%. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq also had their worst weekly performances since the financial crisis in 2008. The Dow Jones is now 35.2% below its all-time high level from February, while the S&P 500 is 32.1% below its high.
A number of factors weighed down the market on Friday, including a stay-at-home order for New York State, a swift reversal in crude prices and a strengthening dollar. The rollover in oil, which has lost half its value in a month, is having a ripple effect, leading investors to sell assets in other markets. Oil gave back a strong gain to settle sharply lower on Friday.
Sources told CNBC that Ronin Capital, a clearing firm at the CME Group, was unable to meet its capital requirements. The news also weighed on US stocks in the final two hours of trading because it was yet another sign of the pressure being put on some firms amid the sharp downturn in markets.
Shares of 3M dragged the Dow lower, falling more than 9% along with Disney. The S&P 500 tech sector rolled over to close more than 4% lower as Microsoft fell 3.8%. Qualcomm, meanwhile, slid 6.3%.
Investors got whiplash this week amid the massive daily swings in both directions. The S&P 500 concluded on Thursday a record streak of eight trading days with a closing change of at least 4%. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), Wall Street’s preferred fear gauge, closed above 80 earlier in the week, topping its financial crisis peak.
The Federal Reserve announced this week a number of stimulus measures in addition to Congress’ efforts. The U.S. central bank announced Friday it is expanding its asset purchase program to include municipal bonds. These measures, however, haven’t assuaged investors’ fears.
In New York on Friday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered 100% of nonessential businesses to work from home.
More than 14,000 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the U.S. along with over 200 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. Globally, more than 245,000 cases have been confirmed.