Stocks plummet as oil prices drop

Stocks plunged Monday morning as investors braced for a potential price war among oil exporters that could deepen the economic damage caused by the global coronavirus outbreak.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted by 1,884 points as trading opened, a 7.29 percent drop that would be its 13th largest daily loss by percentage if it holds. The S&P 500 index fell 7 percent, and the Nasdaq composite sank 7.1 percent. Trading was halted for 15 minutes after the S&P fell 7 percent, which automatically triggers a market pause.

Stock futures trading predicted stark losses for the market after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries failed to reach a deal on oil output Saturday, prompting Saudi Arabia to slash prices.

Investors fear that a price war among oil exporters could sap global growth amid a likely slowdown driven by the coronavirus and the extensive efforts to contain it. There are more than 100,000 confirmed cases

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