Stocks suffer worst week in two years

Stocks suffer worst week in two years
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U.S. stocks suffered their worst week in more than two years after closing Friday with heavy losses.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 1.8 percent Friday, a 425-point drop, to close at its lowest level since November. The index fell 5.7 percent this week.

It is down 11.6 percent from its 52-week high, entering a formal correction, which is a 10-percent drop from an index or stock’s 52-week peak.

The Standard and Poor’s 500 index dropped 2 percent Friday, driving its weekly loss to 5.9 percent. The S&P took heavy losses from battered financial stocks, though the index avoided hitting correction level.

The Nasdaq fell 2.4 percent Friday, losing 6.5 percent on the week, weighed down by fading technology stocks.

This week was the worst for U.S stocks since January 2016, according to CNBC, and comes as a series of political pressures weigh on an increasingly volatile stock market.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpJustice Department preparing for Mueller report as soon as next week: reports Smollett lawyers declare 'Empire' star innocent Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration MORE rattled markets Thursday when he announced his plan to impose up to $60 billion in tariffs on Chinese imports in response to intellectual property theft from U.S. businesses. The Dow ended Thursday down 722 points, a 2.9 percent drop, and briefly fell into correction territory.

The Nasdaq fell roughy 2.4 percent, while the S&P slid 2.5 percent. It was the worst day for U.S stocks since Feb. 8, when the Dow lost 1,033 points amid a massive sell-off.

Wall Street fears the new U.S. tariffs will spur retaliation from China and hinder global economic growth. Trump also announced tariffs earlier this month on imported steel and aluminum, triggering alarm among traders and GOP lawmakers opposed to protectionist trade policies.

While Republicans are far more supportive of Trump’s tariffs on China than the levies on steel and aluminum, both announcements sent traders into a panic. Shares in major U.S. exporters have fallen as U.S. trading partners pledge to retaliate.

Technology shares have also dropped during Facebook’s growing scandal over the mishandling of user data. The company’s stock has dropped more than 10 percent this week after reports that Cambridge Analytica, a firm that worked on Trump’s 2016 campaign, used personal data from roughly 50 million Facebook users for political purposes without their knowledge.

Multiple congressional committees have asked Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergPinterest blocks all vaccine-related searches in effort to combat anti-vax content Hillicon Valley: Kremlin seeks more control over Russian internet | Huawei CEO denies links to Chinese government | Facebook accused of exposing health data | Harris calls for paper ballots | Twitter updates ad rules ahead of EU election Patients, health data experts accuse Facebook of exposing personal info MORE to testify, and the Federal Trade Commission has reportedly opened an investigation into the company.

Facebook’s troubles spurred heavy losses for technology stocks this week as traders feared a broader regulatory crackdown on tech firms.