Dow Dives Below 11K on Downgrade
Dow loses 135 points at open, now down more than 500
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 8, 2011 8:44 AM CDT
Updated Aug 8, 2011 1:28 PM CDT
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during afternoon trading on August 5, 2011 in New York City.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Investors reacted to the S&P's US credit rating downgrade and Europe's debt woes today exactly the way you'd expect: They panicked. Stocks started low, and have sunk ever deeper throughout the day. As of 2:26pm EST, the Dow was down a whopping 600 points, taking it below 11,000, with the S&P and Nasdaq falling around 76 and 158 points, respectively. “The initial reaction with most things problematic in the market is to sell and ask questions later,” one investment banker told the Wall Street Journal this morning.

The turmoil sent investors scrambling to an ironic place for safety: US Treasurys, which saw big gains despite the downgrade. Gold also soared, hitting more than $1,720 an ounce.