Dow plunges again on coronavirus fears

Stock markets tumbled on Wednesday, and are down more than 20% from their 2020 peak, as the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a "pandemic."
8:30 | 03/11/20

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Transcript for Dow plunges again on coronavirus fears
This is an ABC news special report. Dell reported George step. They're now breaking news in the corona virus emerged he that is the scene on Wall Street recognizing the Dow Jones down almost 6%. Now 123575. That is officially a bear market now comes. Would new news today on the corona virus current crisis serious news and World Health Organization. Has said that the cove in nineteen spread can now be characterized as a pandemic and listen to this they say we are deeply concerned. We're pretty alarming levels and spread and severity and by the alarming levels an action. In these maps of the market is just about to close right now down almost 6%. Sure how much his career by just spread around. Reported 1000 cases. 4000 dead for years. More than a thousand cases now in 39 face of the food and prove definitely that again acting before the thoughtful and cover all the you know. This right now for Jim let's begin with that characterization from the World Health Organization. A pandemic it comes as doctor Anthony patchy. Leading infectious disease expert here in the United States says the situation he's going to get worse and worse and worse. Right and he is one of the premier infectious disease experts in the world George. He did represented a shift. I think in the focus now between attempting to stop ends. Rather slow or mitigate the impact of corona virus in the United States. But it's important to remember that that when the director of the World Health Organization. Recognizes. This outbreak as a pandemic they are emphasizing. I it can be stopped but it will take aggressive measures. And they put out a statement say George that it's time to prioritize care and activate triage procedures and scale up search plans for health. Facilities what this means to hospitals will be different than what it means to communities so in the community. We should expect to possibly seeing more social distancing measures more school closures. More cancellations of large events that does a very important thing in an outbreak George what it does is it flattens the curb its slows the spread. And it buys us time so I think we can expect to see more of that here. Yeah we've seen we've seen some of those measures gently senior that in the in this city of New Rochelle hearing yours they basically. And I'm partial lockdown a moderate moderate lockdown state of Washington is said that there should be no events of large and 250 people we should expect to see. More states taking measures like. I think so and that's not only to mitigate the impact honesty feisty or community by community level. But to be clear while we think that about 80% of clinical cases. Are mild right now just here in New York State about 15%. Of confirmed cases are requiring hospitalization. So make no mistake for most people. Yes this could be mild. But for some it Ken and will be severe and I think. The recognition of this as a pandemic on the part of the WHO. Is really a call to action. That they are concerned. They had seen Sistine community to community spread and transmission. Of this novel corona virus in multiple countries and they do you also look for severity and in some countries. That has been a more of an impact than in others but that's what they're. That means the market for is now in a bear market down twenty Purcell. Right 20% from the record highs that it hit last month. And Wall Street really paid close attention to the words from the WHO today in everything that Jen just mention. The really focused on what we're hearing from companies in so many different industries united for example has talked about the told this has taken on their business. They state and homeland worse than 9/11 two times as bad as not eleven sales looking like they're down on domestic flights 70%. Boeing. Which had issues because of the 737 Max are now facing increased issues because the airlines are not ordering planes they're canceling orders for planes. You're also hearing it from small businesses Georgia hear it every day. And we're seeing more and more companies take these drastic measures telling their employees to stay home and and that has a lot to do with flattening the curve keeping sick people away from the masses is going to keep the spread of this disease from going much steeper but there's also those who can't stay home and continue to get paid companies like Starbucks. Today stepping up and saying. They are employees who need to stay home sick. We'll still get paid for that sick leave and that's a big question when it comes to the fiscal measures and the stimulus. But it was that could amount to get to we saw the market rise yesterday and I'm hopes of the have been watching would come together on some kind of stimulus package that is much more uncertain now part of the reason. For the fall today. Absolutely and and the question is. If their stimulus what kind of stimulus will it be there's the initial issues here you have a number of businesses. That are facing real serious hardships but you also have a number of individuals. Who you don't want to incentivized them to go to works sick so for anybody who's a service worker who needs to be physically out their job to get paid. Paid sick leave is the kind of measure that would keep them from going into work on a day when they're not feeling blue. You need bipartisan guy consensus on getting some kind of paid sick leave the president calling for this payroll tax cut. There was that had a bit of a rocky reception. How much rocky reception and and part of it too is when you think about the economic effects of something like a payroll tax cut. Those are longer term that isn't an immediate they've when people are already hunkering down in trying to stay inside. The last thing that. Most people are looking for right now is extra in their paycheck to go out and spend and that's something that in the longer run certainly is going to help and and certainly there are. People who are trying to plan and prepare for this at home and they need that right now in order to take care of that. But at the same time the biggest thing is that paid sick leave George people shouldn't be going to work at their sick he want to incentivize them to stay home. So they're more questions about what white of the White House gonna do what congress is gonna do want to bring it to see if they got from the White House right now we're learning now that the president intends to make a statement to the nation tonight. Yet George the details are just coming in because the reporters who were just in the room with the. Around 8 o'clock tonight he says he'll be discussing economic health. And related announcements. Health and economic and health related announcements excuse me. Also it appears he's going to be talking about what the country should be doing to deal with this corona virus outbreak. He was asked during this discussion with reporters that he's in there should note with with Wall Street banking executives that was what this meeting was about reporters asked the president's he's. Considering. National declaring a national emergency or get a import it and any travel restrictions he would not answer those questions that George. Obviously this issue is front of mind here at the White House for the president and this administration he has been tweeting about it all day including one tweet. That I think left some heads had some head scratching he said I am fully prepared to use a full power. The federal government to deal with our current challenge of the corona virus it's unclear. Exactly what he intends to do perhaps that is something he will be talking about tonight but as a mentioned he was in this meeting just a few minutes ago here at the White House in the cabinet room. With Wall Street executives he is promising. Economic relief exactly what you were talking about that payroll tax cut particularly that has received such a lukewarm reception there on capitol held but. He he made he made it very clear the president right now he said George our number one priority is the health of the country so we will be watching tonight. To hear more about what he asked to say. We will be what checked to see it thanks very much again for now we're gonna return to our regular program the Dow Jones down almost 6% today now officially in a bear market as the World Health Organization. Recognizes the spread of this novel corona virus is a pandemic. Our coverage continues now on ABC news alive and mobile full report tonight and will news tonight. We gave him here I'm George Stephanopoulos in New York have a good afternoon. This has been a special. From the U.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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