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Economy & Business

Coronavirus Threat Coupled with Saudi Oil Glut Sends Global Markets Into a Dive

Outside the New York Stock Exchange in 2015 (Carlo Allegri/Reuters)

U.S. stock-index futures dropped precipitously on Sunday as oil plunged more than 20 percent due to coronavirus fears and a breakdown in negotiations with OPEC that led Saudi Arabia to slash crude export prices.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 4.9 percent to 24,534 as the S&P 500 likewise sank 4.9 percent to 2,819, and Nasdaq Composite dropped 4.8 percent 8,093.25 ahead of Monday trading. The Dow is expected to open at least 1,300 points lower on Monday.

The nearly 5 percent drop in S&P 500 futures at one point triggered a circuit breaker that halted trading.

The global stock market plunge occurred after oil prices dropped over 20 percent when OPEC failed to reach an agreement with its allies over oil production cuts and Saudi Arabia subsequently slashed its prices for benchmark crude.

U.S. oil sank 10.1 percent on Friday, its largest drop in over five years.

Markets around the world began to plummet last month as fears of the spreading coronavirus rattled investors. The virus, a respiratory illness, has spread well beyond its origin in China and infected over 109,000 and killed 3,800. Over 500 people in the U.S. are infected, and 22 have died as a result of the virus.

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