Hours after the Dow Jones Industrial Average entered a bear market for the first time since the 2008 financial crisis, President Donald Trump made matters worse during a primetime address to the nation.
CNN reports: US President Donald Trump took to the airwaves on Wednesday in an attempt to assure the American public that the coronavirus pandemic was under control. Instead, he announced a shock ban on travel from Europe while failing to deliver the comprehensive economic and medical response to the outbreak that investors are craving. Trump’s address has taken the floor out from stocks. Dow futures are off more than 1,200 points, or 5.1%. S&P 500 futures bumped up against their daily 5% loss limit before rebounding slightly. Nasdaq Composite futures are down 4.7%.
More from Business Insider: The drop-off came after President Donald Trump announced several steps the US will take to respond to the coronavirus pandemic. Trump said the US will ban all travel from Europe by non-US citizens for thirty days. He added that the “prohibitions will not only apply to the tremendous amounts of trade and cargo, but various other things as we get approval. Anything coming from Europe to the United States is what we are discussing.” But the White House and the president himself scrambled to clarify his comments as futures tanked in response to his announcement. “Hoping to get the payroll tax cut approved by both Republicans and Democrats, and please remember, very important for all countries & businesses to know that trade will in no way be affected by the 30-day restriction on travel from Europe. The restriction stops people not goods,” Trump tweeted, contradicting his earlier remarks.
In related news, Carnival’s Princess Cruises announced Thursday it is suspending all operations on 18 ships for two months due to concerns over coronavirus. The announcement sent Carinval shares down 22 percent in pre-market trading.