The Dow’s disastrous week took an even darker turn on Friday after dismal economic data from China intensified fears of a looming recession – and caused U.S. stock market futures to point toward a fifth consecutive day of losses.
Dow Futures Plunge after SSE Composite Implodes on Friday
As of 8:48 am ET on Friday, Dow Jones Industrial Average Futures had fallen by 203 points or 0.8%. S&P 500 futures lost 0.8%, and Nasdaq futures dropped by 1%.
The U.S. stock market’s pre-bell sell-off followed one of the worst days for Chinese stocks in recent memory. The red-hot Shanghai Composite Index (SSE) plummeted by 4.4% during the week’s final trading session, causing the index to crash below the crucial 3,000 level it had only recently achieved. Altogether, the SSE Composite lost a breathtaking $345 billion.
The SSE plunge followed the publication of trade data that was dramatically worse than expected. According to CNBC, dollar-denominated Chinese exports fell by 20.7% in February versus last year, while the country’s trade balance was more than $22 billion lower than expected.
Commenting on the data, ANZ published a note declaring that “China’s trade recession has started to emerge.”
Dow Plunges 200 Points on Thursday; S&P 500, Nasdaq Follow
The Dow and broader U.S. stock market had already plunged anew on Thursday after the European Central Bank (ECB) launched fresh stimulus measures to combat a slowing regional economy. The shocking announcement brought recession fears back to the fore as investors continue to navigate a synchronized slowdown in global growth.
All of Wall Street’s major indexes declined sharply through the morning, reflecting a volatile pre-market session for U.S. stock futures. By the end of trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 200.23 points, or 0.8%, to close at 25,473.23. That was its fourth consecutive drop. The Dow was off more than 300 points at its lowest point during the day.