Dow erases all gains made since Trump took office

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Wednesday erased all the gains it had made since President TrumpDonald TrumpStowaway found in landing gear of plane after flight from Guatemala to Miami Kushner looking to Middle East for investors in new firm: report GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips MORE took office amid the ongoing economic fallout from the coronavirus epidemic.

The morning of Trump's inauguration, the stock index opened at 19,795 and closed at 19,827. At its lowest point on Wednesday, it fell to 19,700.

The S&P 500, widely considered a better gauge of the overall market, remained about 5 percent higher than it was on inauguration day but down dramatically from its February highs.

While the market's volatility means the Dow is likely to bounce and fall dramatically in the coming days and weeks, its descent to levels not seen since before Trump took office carries symbolic weight.

Trump frequently touted the stock market's rise as a sign of his successful stewardship of the economy. Indeed, just a month ago, the Dow surpassed 29,500, and seemed set to break 30,000.

But the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic on markets and the economy writ large has been swift and painful. 

The White House is working on a plan to provide cash to every American as Congress works to shore up the social safety net for those sick and unemployed as a result of the pandemic.