Stocks get body-slammed in worst Q1 ever

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 02:28s - Published
Stocks get body-slammed in worst Q1 ever

Stocks get body-slammed in worst Q1 ever

Wall Street suffered its biggest first-quarter plunge in history as worries the coronavirus pandemic could send the global economy into a deep dive took its toll.

Conway G.

Gittens has the Wall Street recap.


RESENDING WITH CORRECT CLOSING MARKET GRAPHIC A stock market rally fizzled to mark the final day of the worst first quarter Wall Street has ever seen.

In the first three months of this year, stocks nose-dived from record highs to a bear market in record time... Though stocks have bounced off the lows, The S&P 500 has fallen 20 percent since the start of the year, and down roughly 24 percent from that all-time closing high set in February... As for Tuesday trading: stocks finished down by nearly 2 percent.

David Miller, chief investment officer at Catalyst Funds, seemed relieved with that modest loss, given Wall Street's fear gauge, the volatility index, or VIX, remains elevated.

SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) DAVID MILLER, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, CATALYST FUNDS, SAYING: "It seems like a pretty calm day compared to what we've seen over the past couple of weeks, so frankly it's not such a bad sign, given where the VIX is implies we should be expecting four percent daily moves.

So this is actually a sign of a little bit of calm, I think." A worrisome sign Tuesday from the mighty U.S. consumer: confidence dropped near a three-year low in March.

The Conference Board said the plunge is more than just a temporary shock - - that doesn't bode well for the economy since consumer shopping is responsible for two-thirds of all economic activity.

Retailers have had to shut stores with Americans ordered to stay indoors to curtail the coronavirus outbreak, and so retailers are furloughing workers.

JC Penney was the latest.

It announced Tuesday that a majority of its retail staff would be temporarily laid off.

Macy's and GAP have made similar decisions.

Airlines are also trying to cope... Southwest Airlines announced it is cutting domestic flights by 40 percent starting May 3 through June 5th.

That's 1700 flights a day.

And sources tell Reuters American Airlines is vastly speeding up retirement of older planes.

It is not alone in keeping planes on the ground.

Global airlines have parked 4700 aircraft due to the pandemic.

Major airline stocks rallied on the cost-cutting measures.

Finally, on a bright note:

Class="kln">Tesla CEO Elon Musk says his company has extra ventilators approved by the FDA and he'll cover the cost of the device and shipping - but only to hospitals in regions where the electric car maker delivers.

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