Stocks Plunge Thursday Midday

The S&P 500 index slid 61 points, or 2.3 percent, to 2,638 as of 11:47 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow dropped 626 points, or 2.5 percent, to 24,400. The average briefly slumped as much as 784 points. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite lost 119 points, or 1.7 percent, to 7,039.

The Russell 2000 index of small-company stocks gave up 35 points, or 2.4 percent, to 1,445.

The latest losses put the S&P 500 and the Dow back into the red for the year. The Nasdaq was still slightly higher for 2018.

Major indexes overseas also fell sharply. The DAX in Germany dropped 3.9 percent, while France’s CAC 40 lost 3.7 percent. The FTSE 100 in Britain declined 3.6 percent.

Canadian authorities arrested the chief financial officer of China’s Huawei Technologies on Wednesday for possible extradition to the U.S.

Meng is a prominent member of Chinese society as deputy chairman of the board and the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei. China has demanded Meng’s immediate release.

The arrest came days after President Donald Trump met with Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss the two nation’s escalating trade dispute.

Markets rallied on Monday on news that Trump and Xi had agreed at the summit over the weekend to a temporary, 90-day stand-down in the two nations’ escalating trade dispute. That optimism quickly faded as skepticism grew that Beijing will yield to U.S. demands anytime soon, leading to a steep sell-off in global markets on Tuesday.

“Trade tensions aren’t going away,” Schaffer said.

The renewed jitters over the implications that Meng’s arrest could have on U.S.-China trade negotiations weighed on big exporters Thursday. Boeing slumped 6.3 percent to $320.96.

The news also resulted in another down day for markets in Asia.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index tumbled 2.5 percent and Japan’s benchmark Nikkei

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