NEW YORK, New York – US stocks fell sharply on Friday, but reduced losses late in the day. Nonetheless, the US markets reflected strong sales around the world. This despite strong economic data from the United States.
The Nasdaq Composite performed less well in terms of percentage, losing 119.86 points or 0.85% to 13,962.68.
The Standard and Poor’s 500 lost 30.30 points or 0.72% to 4,181.17.
The Dow Jones industry fell 185.51 points or 0.54 percent to 33,874.85.
The US dollar rallied sharply on Friday as stocks fell. The euro fell to 1.2018 by the close in New York. The British pound fell to 1.3806. The Japanese yen was significantly lower at 109.31. The Swiss franc fell to 0.9139.
The Canadian dollar edged up to 1.2290. The Australian dollar was sold at 0.7699. The New Zealand dollar fell to 0.7151.
One of the main concerns the markets faced on Friday was an unexpectedly sharp deterioration in the economic outlook for Europe which sank into recession.
The euro area economy fell 0.6% in the first three months of this year, following a 0.7% contraction in the fourth quarter of 2020, Eurostat, the Union’s statistical office, said on Friday. European Union (EU), as reported by the Xinhua News Agency.
According to Eurostat’s preliminary flash estimate, the EU’s gross domestic product (GDP) fell by 0.4%, after falling 0.5% in the previous quarter.
Negative growth for two consecutive quarters means that the 19 EU member states that use the single currency are technically in recession, despite the strong 12.5% rebound recorded in the third quarter of 2020.
Portugal recorded the largest quarterly decline of 3.3%, followed by Latvia (2.6%) and Germany (1.7%).
In its spring forecast released in February, the EU predicted that growth in the euro area would not exceed 3.8% this year, with Europe still in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the report. Xinhua.
The German Dax fell 0.12% on Friday, while in Paris, France, the CAC 40 fell 0.57%.
London’s FTSE 100 was the only major index to advance, albeit a small 0.12 percent.
The sharp global decline in equities started in Asia, where the day’s biggest loser was Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, which fell 578.38 points or 1.97% to 28,724.88.
In China, the Shanghai Composite Index slipped 28.04 points or 0.81% to close at 3446.86.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 241.34 points or 0.83% to 28,812.63.
The Australian All Ordinaries fell 55.30 points or 0.75 percent to 7,290.70.