Growing fears regarding the rapidly spreading coronavirus have resulted in a global stock market sell-off. The plunge in stock markets caused the FTSE 100 to fall by its biggest one-day fall in four years.
Investors continue to seek shelter in more secure investments as the evidence grows that coronavirus could threaten deeper economic damage around the globe.
A significant influx of cases outside of China has unnerved investors and therefore negatively impacted European stocks.
London´s leading stock exchange index closed 247 points – or 3.34 per cent – down to 7,118 points, a bigger decline than it suffered the day after the Brexit referendum in June 2016.
The last FTSE 100 fall of 3 per cent came in October 2019 as Brexit turmoil wiped tens of billions of pounds off UK stocks.
Trading screens turned red after COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, took hold in countries beyond China over the weekend; threatening to inflict more damage on the world economy.
Easyjet and British Airways, both FTSE 100-listed companies, recorded some of the day´s most dramatic drops, down 16.19 per cent and 9.15 per cent respectively. Other travel operators, Tui group and Wizz Air, were both down by more than 10 per cent.
British government bond yields also reached their lowest level for more than four months, falling as much as 10 basis points as a result of the latest spread of the outbreak.