THURSDAY – Stocks fell on Thursday after the European Central Bank slashed its economic growth forecast for 2019 and announced a new round of stimulus to help banks in the region, stoking worries over the global economy.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 246 points lower as shares of 3M and United Technologies lagged. The S&P 500 fell 0.7 percent, led by declines in the industrials and materials sectors. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.8 percent. The indexes were headed for their fourth consecutive loss.
Both the Nasdaq and S&P 500 also broke below their 200-day moving averages, levels that are closely watched by traders.
ECB President Mario Draghi said the central bank cut its growth estimate to 1.1 percent, down from a 1.7 percent expansion forecast released in December.
Thursday’s moves come after the major indexes posted their third straight day of losses, with investors eager to know details from trade negotiations between the U.S. and China.
Stocks are still up sharply for the year despite Thursday’s losses. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq have both risen more than 10 percent while the Dow is up more than 9 percent.