US stock market plummets with new virus variant worries

Oil prices post largest daily decline of 2021 with 12% loss, VIX volatility index soars 54%

Ovunc Kutlu   | 26.11.2021
US stock market plummets with new virus variant worries FILE PHOTO


Major indices in the US stock market plummeted on Friday to close with massive losses in half-day session after Thanksgiving Day, as a new coronavirus variant caused worries among investors.

The blue-chip Dow dove 905 points, or 2.53%, to 34,899. IBM and Walt Disney fell to their lowest level in a year.

The S&P 500 fell 106 points, or 2.27%, to 4,594 as Tesla shares tanked 3%.

Tech-heavy Nasdaq decreased 353 points, or 2.23%, to 15,491 with GameStop and Uber losing 5.3% and 3.7%, respectively.

The steep decline came amid worries that the new coronavirus variant known as B.1.1.529 in South Africa could prompt quarantine measures, closure of businesses, and halt economic recovery around the world once again.

Due to heightened risks, the VIX volatility index, known as the fear index, jumped 54% to 28.62.

The dollar index was down 0.74% to 96.06, while the yield on 10-year US Treasury notes fell 9.8% to 1.483%.

With the potential risk of lower global oil demand due to the new variant, oil prices posted their largest daily decline for 2021 with a 12% loss. Price of Brent crude fell was down 11.5% to $72.75 a barrel and the US benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude lost 13% to $68.17.

Precious metals were down with gold losing 0.04% to $1,788 an ounce, and silver falling 2% to $23.11 an ounce.

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