Wall Street Experienced a Staggering 1,200 Unprecedented Emergency Freezes
Selling on Wall Street was so drastic Monday that the stocks and exchange-traded funds went through unprecedented emergency halts 1,200 times.
This frequency of interruptions in the stock market only means how extreme the sell-offs were in just a very short period of time. Investors' fear of China's sluggish economic growth brought the Dow in a downward curve to just over 1,000 points during the market's opening. It ended to almost 600 points, the lowest it has been since 2011.
The volatility in the market can be attributed to several reasons, including another Chinese stocks sell-off, plunging oil prices, and the issue about the Federal Reserve planning to increase interest rates, something that hasn't happened for 10 years.
The benchmark exchange of China in Shanghai opened Tuesday morning at a low 6.4 percent after dropping to over 8 percent Monday. It ended by 4.33 percent by the end of the day. Amid all the concerns, there is still good news as the trading floor in Hong Kong saw a positive turn opening down 1 percent. There are also moderate gains in Sydney. There are also signs that there will be rebounds in Europe. But the volatility in the market will continue unless there will be genuine stability in China.
To control dramatic selling and buying of stock, circuit breakers were created. They are triggered when the market experience drastic drops or spikes in just a short period of time. It is like a time out that lets traders calm down before they get back to dealing in the market.
Circuit breakers were installed after the flash crash that happened in 2010. There are several dozens of halts everyday in a normal market. But the 1,200 breaks on Monday are just too much. According to market structure consultant Dennis Dick, "That's huge, I've never seen that many halts."