U.S. stock prices fell sharply Monday, following conflicts in the Middle East, and weaker economies in China and in Europe.
U.S. stocks started the new year with the most selling of stocks and investments since September 2015, reported CBS News.
Stocks lost between 2 percent and 3 percent in trading.
The weaker economy in China “reignitedfears of a global slowdown,” according to Reuters.
Chinese stocks fell about 7 percent Monday. This caused officials to halt trading for the day to stop the falls on the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges.
It was the first time China used a “circuit breaker,” said CBS News. A “circuit breaker” in a stock exchange stops trading that happens when investors panic and sell too much in too short a time.
Reports showed that Chinese manufacturers are not producing as much as before. Investors say China’s economic growth is slowing.
China is the world’s second-largest economy and a key market for many other nations.
Japan’s Nikkei index was down 3 percent, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell more than 2 1/2 percent by the close of trading.
European markets followed Asia’s lead. Germany’s stock market was down more than 4 percent. The British stock market fell by more than 2 percent.
Meanwhile, crude oil prices increased. Analysts are concerned that tensionbetween oil producers Saudi Arabia and Iran might reduce energy supplies.
I’m Mary Gotschall.
Words in This Story
slowdown – n.a decrease in the speed at which something is moving or happening
slump– n. a period of time when an economy is doing poorly
tension– n. a state in which people, groups, countries, etc., disagree with and feel anger toward each other
reignite– v. to cause (something) to suddenly occur again
mechanism– n. a process or system that is used to produce a particular result
tension– n.a state in which people, groups, countries, etc., disagree with and feel anger toward each other