Wall Street Tumbles on Rising Fears of Prolonged Shutdown due to Covid-19 Infections & Deaths

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Wall Street Tumbles on Rising Fears of Prolonged Shutdown due to Covid-19 Infections & Deaths

 Wall Street Tumbles on Rising Fears of Prolonged Shutdown due to Covid-19 Infections & Deaths

US Markets: Broader indices in the United States traded in red - particularly, the S&P 500 index traded 42.97 points or 1.70% lower at 2,483.93, Dow Jones Industrial Average Index contracted by 388.15 points or 1.81% lower at 21,025.29, and the technology benchmark index Nasdaq Composite traded lower at 7,359.17, down by 128.14 points or 1.71% against its previous day close (at the time of writing, before the U.S market close at 1:20 PM ET).

US News: The Wall Street plunged as the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 701,000 American had lost jobs in March, resulting the unemployment rate jumping to 4.4% (50 years low: 3.4%). In Friday’s trading session, selloff on Wall Street was led by Utility and Energy sectors. Unexpectedly, non-manufacturing PMI in US was reported as 52.4 points (as against 44 points estimated by The Institute of Supply Management) for March, while it was 57.3 in February. On the other hand, Ford Motor, that reported 12.5% fall in US auto sales yesterday, has announced the cessation of vehicle and engine production at mostly European sites to 4th May 2020; its stock was slightly down by around 2%. 3M shares slipped around 1.94% as the President ordered under the Defense Production Act to accelerate production of N95 face masks. Meanwhile, American Airlines has reported to slash 70% to 75% flights in April and 80% in May due to nosedived travel demand. Surprisingly, Tesla surged around 10% as they unveiled a trading update for the first quarter of 2020 and highlighted delivery of 88,000 units of Model Y.

S&P 500 (SPX)

Top Performers*: Arconic Corp (PITTSBURGH), Marketaxess Holdings Inc, and EOG Resources Inc shares increased by 12.72%, 6.19% and 5.90% respectively.

Non Performers*: Live Nation Entertainment Inc, MGM Resorts International and Wynn Resorts Ltd shares decreased by 12.25%, 10.86% and 10.71% respectively.

NASDAQ Composite (IXIC)

Top Performers*: electroCore, Inc., SAExploration Holdings Inc, and XpressSpa Group Inc shares expanded by 76.83%, 44.35% and 36.75% respectively.

Worst Performers*: Hexindai Inc, Immunomedics Inc and OncoSec Medical Inc shares plunged by 17.50%, 15.12% and 14.55% respectively.

Top Worst Sectors*: Utilities (-4.27%), Energy (-3.16%), and Industrials (-2.77%).

Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)

Top Performers*: Pfizer Inc and Boeing Co are the top gainers and increased by 1.55%, 1.41%, respectively.

Worst Performers*: Microsoft Corp, Verizon Communications Inc and Coca-Cola Co are top laggards and decreased by 1.57%, 0.87% and 0.84% respectively.

European Markets: The London’s broader equity benchmark index FTSE 100 traded at 64.72 points or 1.18% lower at 5,415.50, the FTSE 250 index snapped at 337.59 points or 2.34% lower at 14,099.21, and the FTSE All-Share Index ended 40.14 points or 1.34% lower at 2,958.40 respectively. Another European equity benchmark index STOXX 600 ended down by 3.02 points or 0.97 per cent, at 309.06. Among other major European indices, DAX index closed the session at 9,525.77, down by 45.05 points or 0.47%; CAC 40 index plunged by 66.37 points or 1.57% and ended the trading session at 4,154.58.

European News: London and European stocks plummeted after the European Union regulator has asked to suspend dividends and share buybacks to insurers and reinsurers. Meanwhile, the European Commission has waived off custom duties, and value-added taxes over medical devices and equipment to battle with coronavirus pandemic. Sadly, the number of deaths in UK rose by 23% to 3,605 in a day, while British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is still in isolation with mild symptoms of coronavirus. In economic news, the adjusted IHS Markit/CIPS Final UK Services PMI Business Activity Index data released by the IHS Markit company for United Kingdom today has shown a sharp fall in the business activity levels in the country. The Index showed a value of 34.5 for the march month as compared to 53.2 recorded in the month of February, registering a drop of 18.7 points. In other news, British Chancellor to the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is set to extend the Loan guarantee scheme announced earlier to medium sized businesses as well, it’s worth remembering that on last month, the Chancellor had announced a loan guarantee scheme where the Bank of England would Guarantee loans taken by Companies to fund their businesses, hit by the pandemic slowdown. Among the stocks trending in Friday’s trading session were the blue-chip stocks - Legal & General fell 1.2%, Aviva and Prudential dropped around 4% and 7% respectively. Similarly, Defense company, BAE Systems fell about 2.3% on deferring the dividend. London’s bus operators surged as they gained aid from the government, First Group, Go-Ahead Group and National Express group increased between 2% to 5%. Likewise, H&M’s share soared over 7% (which has lost its value over 40% since January) in the early trading, despite reporting 46% nosedived sales in March sales, since the Company has started slashing operating expenses to bolster liquidity.

London Stock Exchange

Top Performers*: TULLOW OIL PLC (TLW), ENQUEST PLC (ENQ) and PREMIER OIL PLC (PMO) are top movers and rose by 35.27%, 16.67% and 14.27% respectively.

Worst Performers*: ASTON MARTIN LAGONDA GLOBAL HOLDING (AML), HAMMERSON PLC (HMSO) and BROWN(N.) GROUP PLC (BWNG) plunged by 20.09%, 16.83% and 14.08% respectively.

FTSE 100 Index

5 days FTSE 100 Index Performance (April-03-2020), before the market closed (Source: TR)

Best Gainers*: MELROSE INDUSTRIES PLC (MRO), LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE GROUP PLC (LSE) and BUNZL PLC (BNZL) expanded by 5.94%, 5.70% and 5.08% respectively.

Non Performers*: PEARSON PLC (PSON), LEGAL & GENERAL GROUP PLC (LGEN) and AVIVA PLC (AV.) plunged by 10.08%, 6.50% and 6.33% respectively.

Shares traded with high-level volume*: (LLOY) LLOYDS BANKING GROUP PLC; (CNA) CENTRICA PLC; (BARC) BARCLAYS PLC.

Top Sectors traded in the positive zone*: Healthcare (+0.91%) and Technology (+0.75%).

Top Sectors traded in the negative zone*: Utilities (-3.65%), Energy (-1.95%) and Consumer Cyclicals (-1.59%).

Forex Rates*: GBP/USD and EUR/GBP were hovering at 1.2253 and 0.8814, respectively.

Bond Yields*: U.S 10-Year Treasuries yield was tilting at 0.579%, and the UK 10-Year Government Bond yield was hovering at 0.313%, respectively.

*At the time of writing

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