Wall Street Experiences Sudden Drop

Jack Carrell, Reporter

When markets opened on Monday, March 9, the Dow Jones saw its worst single-day drop since the recession of 2008. At the opening, the Dow fell over 2,000 points, so quickly that it triggered a 15 minute halt in trading, according to Reuters.

“I think it is just trying to calm down emotions,” economics teacher Steve Dodge pointed out. “People start seeing things drop so fast they continue to make it slide, more rapidly, so it’s nice to have a 15-minute break where it just kind of lets people catch up. Sometimes the orders and stuff can’t catch up with what’s happening and so lets people kind of figure out exactly what they should be doing.”

However, a couple of days prior when President Trump traveled to the CDC headquarters on March 6, he addressed the press and, in turn, the nation. He attempted to reassure the American people that the sector of government he prides himself on the most, the economy, would not be affected by the COVID-19 worries. He claimed the contrary, that the market would improve as a reaction to recent events.

“I like when people happen to stay in the United States and spend their money in the United States,” Trump said. “So I think people are staying in the United States more. They’re going to spend their money in the United States.”

However, President Trump did not predict that the panic of COVID-19 would lead to a crisis in the oil market. The night before the market plunged, Saudi Arabia announced they would be selling oil at a price of six to eight dollars per barrel. This came after failed negotiations between Russia and OPEC to lower oil production in response to fears that COVID-19 would slow economic growth, according to NPR.

This caused a sharp fall in the market when it opened on the morning of March 9, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped over 2,000 points to start the day. The price of oil fell a total of 25 percent, as well. 

“It’s gonna be a little roller coaster for a while but everyone’s trying to figure out how much this will impact the economy, and no one knows at this point,” Dodge said. “It’s the lack of knowledge [and] that no one has any answers that I think is causing the market to go through such a rollercoaster and a drop.”

The consensus among economists, is that the inconsistent market will continue to fluctuate over the next few days or even weeks. As worries of COVID-19 change, the market will change with it. Since the extreme drop, the market has experienced a minor recovery, however this has not yet to make up for the major drop. Most importantly, whether or not America is destined for another recession, like the one seen in 2008, remains a mystery.

“If there is a recession it’ll be short,” Dodge said. “Our numbers for unemployed people are low and our economic growth is slow but solid.”