…As Wall Street down 7%, extending bear market on Trump’s European travel ban***
U.S. President Donald Trump says saving lives in the coronavirus pandemic is more important than the numbers on the stock market, amid sharply sinking indices in New York.
“I don’t want people dying. That’s what I am all about,” Trump said at the White House, calling his move to ban most travel from Europe a “tough decision.”
The president, who has often touted stock market gains since taking office, said those numbers are “not important compared to life and death.”
About the markets, he predicted: “It’s all going to bounce back,” pledging to push ahead with a stimulus programme, even as his Republican Party is pushing back against an aid package proposed by the Democrats.
In the meantime, the U.S. stocks extended their bear market run as Wall Street’s three main indexes all fell about 7 per cent or more in Thursday’s early trade, reacting to President Donald Trump’s ban of most European travel into the United States.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average, the broadest equities gauge on the New York Stock Exchange, was down almost 1,700 points, or almost 7.2 per cent, by 9:44 AM ET (13:44 GMT), after a 5 per cent drop on Wednesday.
The S&P500, barometer for the top 500 U.S. stocks, was nearly 8 per cent, after the previous day’s fall of 4.9 per cent.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite slid 7 per cent, extending Wednesday’s decline of 4.7 per cent.
All three indexes are down more than 20 per cent from their most recent highs in February, denoting bear markets.
Trump announced on Wednesday a ban on travelers from 26 European countries entering the U.S. for a month, in an attempt to contain the spread of the coronavirus.