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Stock market sinks into bear territory as coronavirus declared a pandemic



Goodbye bull market.

The Dow Jones industrial average slide into bear-market territory on Wednesday as the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic and Goldman Sachs predicted an end to an 11-year bull market.

The Dow lost 1,464.84 points, or 5.8 percent, to 23,553.23 — down 20 percent from its high on Feb. 12. A bear market is generally declared after stocks decline 20 percent from recent highs.

Stocks plunged as WHO director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus rang alarm bells over the virus, which has spread to at least 114 countries, killing 4,607 worldwide.

“We are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity, and by the alarming levels of inaction,” Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters before declaring it a pandemic.

Adding to investors’ fears, Goldman Sachs on Wednesday said it expects the tumble will soon bring an end to the longest bull market on record. The bank projected Wednesday that the S&P 500 will drop 15 percent from its current level to 2,450 points by the middle of the year before rebounding in the fourth quarter.

The S&P ended the day down 4.89 percent to 2,741.40 while the Nasdaq lost 4.7 percent to 7,952.05.

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