Wall falls in free fall due to new mutation – Losses over 2% at closing – Worst Black Friday in 50 years
The main Wall Street stock index closed with heavy losses on Friday, as fears about the new African coronavirus mutation, which was detected in South Africa, led to a strong sell-off in markets around the world.
In this climate, the industrial index is on the board Dow Jones, fell by 905.04 points or 2.53% to 34,899.34 points, the worst performance for this year, while at the low of the day “touched” losses of over 1,000 points. The Dow’s previous worst daily performances this year were on July 19 with a fall of 2.09%, on January 27 with a fall of 2.05%, on January 29 with a fall of 2.03% and on May 12 with a fall of 1.99%.
At the same time, the wider S&P 500 sank by 98.26 points or 2.09% to 4,603.20 points while o Nasdaq fell by 353.6 points or 2.23% to 15,491.70 points
On a weekly basis – which had a reduced trading volume as Wall Street was closed yesterday due to Thanksgiving and closed earlier today due to Black Friday – the Nasdaq closed 3.5% lower, while the S&P 500 and Dow lost 2%. , 2% and 2% respectively.
Of the 30 shares of Dow Jones, only the share of Verizon Communications Inc. closed with gains and specifically with an increase of 0.27%. On the other hand, the shares of American Express, Boeing and Caterpillar led the losses with a fall of 8.62%, 5.41% and 4.03% respectively.
It is noted that all three indicators recorded the worst performance on Black Friday in the last 50 years.
The following is a table of previous Black Friday worst performances for the 3 indices since 1950, according to Dow Jones Market data:
The heavy losses came after World Health Organization officials warned on Thursday of a new coronavirus mutation found in South Africa, with scientists fearing it could have increased resistance to vaccines, although the WHO said further research.
It is noted that the United Kingdom temporarily suspended flights from six African countries due to the mutation. Israel has banned travel to several countries after detecting one case in a traveler and two cases in Hong Kong and one in Europe, specifically in Belgium.
In the meantime, the 27 Member States of the European Union have agreed to temporary suspension of flights to and from countries in southern Africa, as a precautionary measure against the new coronavirus mutation, first detected in Botswana, the Slovenian EU Presidency announced on Friday afternoon.
Airline stocks fell sharply amid fears of travel restrictions, with Royal Caribbean, United Airlines, Delta Air Lines and American Airlines falling 13.22%, 9.57%, 8.34% and 8.79%. respectively.
At the same time, bank shares fell amid fears of a slowdown in economic activity. In particular, the shares of Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup fell 3.93%, 2.45% and 2.65% respectively.
On the other hand, its share Modern, which announced tonight that it intends to develop a booster dose of its Covid-19 vaccine specifically targeting the new African variant called Omicron, rose 20.57% while Pfizer’s share rose 6.11%.