Stocks closed with deep losses Friday, curbing the gains from an extraordinary rally that stretched through three days of dire medical and economic news for the U.S. amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 915 points, falling nearly 4.1 percent after its best three-day run since the 1930s. The S&P 500 fell 3.4 percent and the Nasdaq composite sunk 3.8 percent.
Friday’s losses tempered a strong week for stocks that saw the Dow regain roughly 20 percent of its losses since the market crashed in late February. But Wall Street’s gains came as the toll of the coronavirus pandemic intensified across the U.S.
There are more than 97,000 confirmed U.S. cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, resulting in at least 1,475 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University as of Friday afternoon.
More than 3.3 million Americans have filed for unemployment insurance over the past two weeks, according to Labor Department data released Thursday. Several thousands more are expected to have lost their jobs as businesses across the U.S. close in a desperate bid to slow the progress of the coronavirus.
The swift passage of a $2.2 trillion economic rescue plan and a massive expansion of the Federal Reserve’s stimulus and liquidity efforts are believed to have helped soothe some of Wall Street’s worries.
But economists warn that the U.S. is far from rebounding from the slowdown caused by the coronavirus, and won’t be able to recover until the pandemic is under control.