Wall Street starts lower with Wuhan virus fears rekindled

Thursday, 20. February 2020 15:31

US stock futures traded in the red at market open on Thursday, giving up yesterday gains which saw the Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 book all-time highs. Concerns surrounding the coronavirus outbreak were sparked once again earlier with the number of newly registered cases going up both in China and abroad.

Goldman Sachs warned about the rising risk of a market correction due to the outbreak, saying that markets are underestimating the possibility of a fallout from the epidemic.

On the business front, Morgan Stanley announced that it will buy E-Trade for $13 billion by the end of the year in the biggest acquisition by a major US bank since the 2008 financial crisis. Meanwhile, L Brands confirmed that a private equity firm will buy a 55% stake in Victoria's Secret for $525 million.

The Dow Jones shed 0.18% at the opening bell. Pfizer was the worst performer on the Dow, losing nearly 2%. The Nasdaq 100 declined 0.23% at the same time with Copart leading the losses. The company plunged over 9% after second-quarter sales missed estimates. The S&P 500 lost 0.16% at the start as ViacomCBS plummeted over 16% following fourth-quarter earnings flop.

The euro traded flat versus the US dollar, selling for 1.08110 at 9:30 am ET.

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