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Fear and coronavirus on Wall Street

Fear and coronavirus on Wall Street


Markets remain very, very spooked by the possibility of a coronavirus pandemic. In the US, the Dow Jones stock index plunged more than 1,000 points Friday before rebounding slightly, and markets closed their worst week since the 2008 financial crisis. [Washington Post / Adam Taylor, Rick Noack, Siobhán O'Grady, and William Wan]

Cases of the coronavirus have now been reported in 56 countries, raising concerns that a truly global pandemic is now inescapable. A case was reported in Lagos, Nigeria — the largest city in Africa — on Friday as the World Health Organization raised its risk assessment to “very high.” [New York Times]

Vox’s Jen Kirby writes that the long-term impact of the coronavirus on markets is still uncertain. Whether or not the global economy tips into a recession could hinge on how quickly the outbreak is quelled — and how effectively governments respond to it. [Vox / Jen Kirby]

The specter of a worsening outbreak led Japan to cancel school through the end of March as the number of cases there topped 200. [Reuters / Daniel Leussink and Rocky Swift]

In Saudi Arabia, travel to two holy sites has been suspended, a move that could potentially affect the annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. [Al Jazeera

]Iran has also been hit hard: According to BBC sources in the country’s health system, the death toll is now over 200. However, the Iranian government only acknowledged 34 deaths as of Friday morning. [BBC]

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[Vox / Kelsey Piper]

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