Investors shy away from risk as coronavirus rattles markets

"There's a lot of money going into bonds. It doesn't speak to the confidence in the economy, that's for sure." — Willie Delwich, investment strategist.

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February 27, 2020 - 1:34 PM

Traders work during the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Feb. 24, at Wall Street in New York City. Markets have been plummeting over coronavirus fears. Photo by Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images/TNS

LOS ANGELES (AP) — This week’s big sell-off on Wall Street suggests stocks have finally caught up to the bond market, where fear of an economic slowdown has been evident for months.

Signs that the new coronavirus that originated in China is now spreading to other parts of the world rattled investors, intensifying worries about the damage that the outbreak could cause to the global economy and corporate profits.

The anxiety led traders to do something they haven’t been doing lately — move away from riskier holdings. They dumped stocks, handing the major U.S. indexes their worst single-day decline in two years Monday. The S&P 500 was on track for its biggest weekly loss since the early months of the 2008 financial crisis.

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