Dow Plummets on Coronavirus Fears

Index dropped more than 900 in opening minutes
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 24, 2020 8:31 AM CST
Updated Feb 24, 2020 8:41 AM CST
Dow Plummets 900 on Virus Fears
Workers wearing protective gears arrive to spray disinfectant as a precaution against the coronavirus at a market in Seoul, South Korea, Monday, Feb. 24, 2020. World markets were being hit hard by growing fears of the coronavirus.   (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

It's shaping up to be a brutal day on the stock market thanks to rising coronavirus fears. The Dow plunged more than 900 points in the opening minutes on Monday, before recovering a bit. At 9:40am, the index was down 778 points, or 2.6%. That follows similar drops in markets in Asia and Europe, reports the Wall Street Journal. For example, the Stoxx Europe 600 fell 3.5%, its biggest decline in four years. And in Italy, which is coping with its own fast-spreading outbreak, the main index fell 4.7%. So what should investors do? The advice from someone who's done pretty well over the years is to ignore the panicked headlines.

"The real question is: Has the 10-year or 20-year outlook for American businesses changed in the last 24 or 48 hours?" Warren Buffett said on CNBC, in comments MarketWatch is labeling its "call of the day." He added: "You’ll notice many of the businesses we partially own, American Express, Coca-Cola—those are businesses and you don’t buy or sell your business based on today’s headlines. If it gives you a chance to buy something you like and you can buy it even cheaper then it’s your good luck." (Read more stock market stories.)

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