Global stocks sell-off on coronavirus fears
As more cases of the coronavirus develop in China and beyond, markets around the world sold off on Monday. Falling 1.12%, the Dow erased 2020 gains to date while the S&P suffered its biggest one-day loss since October. Almost every sector, especially tech and energy, dropped. The Nasdaq plunged 1.89% with Amazon losing 1.79%, for instance, while a barrel of crude lost 2.62%.
Also, stocks with wide exposure (and deep revenues) in China took a hit. Manulife has been rallying lately because of its growing insurance business in China, but sold off 2.58% Monday. However, the TSX declined only 0.7%, making it one of the most robust indices compared to Japan, Germany and France whose markets dropped around 2.7%.
However, utilities saw a lift with Northland Power gaining nearly 1% and making a record high just shy of $30. Gold increased again, but the biggest gainers by far were biotechs, such as Inovio Pharmaceuticals (INO on the Nasdaq) which rocketed 26% on Monday and rose another 3% minutes after the closing bell in after-hours trading. Inovio is one of the little-known pharmas that the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations has awarded US$9 million to develop a coronavirus vaccine. (Look for more about Inovio and other stocks in our weekly report.)