Dow Grinds Toward Recovery as Coronavirus Infects U.S. Military

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) fought toward a partial recovery, even after a U.S. soldier contracted coronavirus.
Posted in: Markets
February 26, 2020 12:10 PM UTC
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) struggled to mount a partial recovery after two straight days of devastating losses.
  • The first U.S. soldier tested positive for the coronavirus in South Korea overnight.
  • San Francisco declares a state of emergency as America prepares for a pandemic.

The U.S. stock market shot higher on Wednesday, but it was a hollow victory for a shellshocked Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) that just suffered its worst two-day rout in years.

The partial recovery comes as the first U.S. soldier tested positive for the coronavirus in South Korea.

The patient, a 23-year old male, is currently in self quarantine at his off-base residence … Health professionals are actively conducting contact tracing to determine whether any others may have been exposed – Official statement.

Four U.S. military bases in South Korea are now taking emergency measures to protect the 28,500 American soldiers in the region.

Dow embarks on the long road to recovery… again

The Dow soared more than 200 points after the stock market opened on Wednesday. That would be a spectacular rally on an ordinary day. It’s less impressive coming on the heels of a two-day bloodbath that wiped $1.7 trillion out of equities.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) still has a long way to go to reverse its coronavirus crash. | Source: Yahoo Finance

As of 9:53 am ET, the Dow had gained 237.45 points or 0.88% to recover to 27,318.81.

The S&P 500 rose 1.04%, while the Nasdaq bounced 1.34% to regain the 9,000 level.

Today’s stock market action brought a welcome respite from this week’s brutal downturn. But investors may be nervous after what happened on Tuesday. The Dow opened to triple-digit gains, only to careen to losses of nearly 900 points by the time the closing bell rang.

Coronavirus hits U.S. military

The 23-year old soldier was stationed at Camp Carroll near Daegu – the centre of South Korea’s COVID-19 outbreak. According to the official statement, he had also visited Camp Walker on 24 February.

Col. Edward Ballanco, commander of the U.S. Army Garrison in Daegu, said the soldier would receive the best treatment.

We are very well equipped to fight this thing off. I am certain that, that soldier that has tested positive, he’s on his way up to Camp Humphreys today, is going to get better medical care than anyone else in Korea who has the coronavirus.

Movie theatres, bowling allies, and golf courses on the U.S. bases are now closed and meals are served as take-aways.

San Francisco declares state of emergency

Back on home soil, San Francisco Mayor London Breed also took drastic measures. He declared a state of emergency, granting the city additional powers to protect its residents.

The global picture is changing rapidly, and we need to step-up preparedness … We see the virus spreading in new parts of the world every day, and we are taking the necessary steps to protect San Franciscans from harm.

It comes after the CDC issued a strong warning about the looming threat to U.S. citizens.

Ultimately we expect we will see community spread in this country. It’s not so much a question of if this will happen anymore, but rather more a question of exactly when this will happen and how many people in this country will have severe illness.

Trump is furious about the Dow Jones selloff

The spread of COVID-19 beyond China’s borders has investors rattled. The Dow Jones chalked up two straight days of 3% declines – something that hasn’t happened since 2008.

According to the Washington Post, President Trump is livid about the stock market’s plunge. He has warned all aides not to comment on the virus’ impact on stocks. Meanwhile, Trump is tweeting about the stock market again and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow is actively trying to pump the markets back up.

To me, if you are an investor out there and you have a long-term point of view I would suggest very seriously taking a look at the market, the stock market, that is a lot cheaper than it was a week or two ago.

For now, it’s working. The ugliest selloff since the Great Recession has given way to a partial recovery.

But the Dow still has a long way to go to get back to record highs.

Samburaj Das edited this article for If you see a breach of our Code of Ethics or Rights and Duties of the Editor or find a factual, spelling, or grammar error, please contact us.

Last modified: June 24, 2020 1:04 AM UTC

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Ben Brown @_ben_brown

Ben is a journalist with a decade of experience covering financial markets. Based in London, UK, his writing has appeared in The Huffington Post and he was Chief Editor at Block Explorer, the world's longest-running source of Blockchain data. Reach him at or on Twitter at _Ben_Brown. Email ben @