US futures, world shares sink as virus crisis deepens

US futures, world shares sink as virus crisis deepens

U.S. futures slipped more than 3% on Monday and share benchmarks in many world markets logged sharp losses as governments tightened restrictions to fight the coronavirus pandemic, AP reported.

Stocks fell in Paris, Frankfurt and London after a brutal session in Asia on Monday.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 index was the outlier, gaining 2.0% after the International Olympic Committee and Japanese officials indicated they are considering postponing the Tokyo Games, due to begin in July.

India’s Sensex plummeted 11.3% after a sharp drop on the open triggered a circuit breaker halt to trading. Singapore’s benchmark plunged 7.8% after the city-state announced a sharp increase in confirmed infections and its first two deaths.

Shares also fell nearly 8% in Bangkok.

By 4:45 a.m. EST, the S&P 500 future contract was down 3.4% at 2,209.70. The future for the Dow dropped 3.6% to 18,351.00.

Germany’s DAX lost 3.8% to 8,580.56 and Britain’s FTSE 100 tumbled 4.1% to 4,976.54. In Paris, the CAC 40 shed 2.8% to 3,935.15.

Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 5.6% to 4,546.00 after plunging more than 8% sharply just after the open. Australia announced a 66.4 billion Australian dollar ($38.5 billion) stimulus package on Sunday. That’s in addition to an earlier mandated $10 billion package and other stimulus from the central bank.

South Korea’s Kospi lost 5.3% to 1,482.46. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index shed 4.9%, to 21,696.13, while the Shanghai Composite index slipped 3.1% to 2,660.17.

The Nikkei was at 16,887.78.

Shares also fell in Southeast Asia.

Shutdowns mean less demand for oil. U.S. crude has dropped about 21%, dipping below $20 a barrel last week for the first time since February 2002. However, on Monday benchmark crude was up 8 cents at $22.71 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Brent crude, the international standard, dropped 99 cents to $25.99 per barrel.

Meanwhile, demand for the U.S. dollar has been soaring. The dollar was at 110.10 Japanese yen on Monday, down from 110.83 yen late Friday.

The euro fell to $1.0651 from $1.0697.