Trading Temporarily Halts As Stock Market Plummets, Real Estate Reels

The S&P 500 Index’s 7 percent drop triggered a 15 minute halt in trading. If could be suspended for the day if it hits other marks.

The U.S. stock market started the week on a sour note, with the Dow Jones dropping nearly 1,900 points, or 7.3 percent in value before a halt in trading, within the first half-hour of markets opening.

The plummet followed on the heels of a more than 30 percent drop in oil futures over the weekend, as top producers Russia and Saudi Arabia negotiate over price and demand, as well as the rise in cases of coronavirus (COVID-19). 

The drop was so steep, the S&P 500 Index’s nearly 7 percent decline in the morning triggered a 15-minute pause in trading at around 9:30 a.m. Trading will halt once again for 15 minutes if the index drops more than 13 percent from where it closed Friday.

Trading will be suspended for the day if the S&P 500 Index drops more than 20 percent.

As of 10 a.m., Monday, real estate stocks were taking a beating, with Zillow down 7.45 percent, Realogy down 7 percent, RE/MAX down nearly 8 percent, eXp World Holdings down 7.2 percent and Redfin down 8.5 percent.

Fears over the rapid spread of coronavirus have created chaos in the financial markets in the past couple of weeks, causing both historic drops and massive corrections on any given day.

The disease, meanwhile, continues to spread in the U.S. The death tolls reached double digits and the number of cases surpassed 500, according to the New York Times. 

It’s also putting a crunch on local economies with the cancellation of major events like Austin’s South by Southwest festival. 


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