The stock market tanked on Tuesday, adding to already significant losses so far this month amid ongoing concerns about an economic slowdown, while investors dumped shares of Big Tech stocks ahead of several big earnings reports.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 2.4%, over 800 points, while the S&P 500 lost 2.8% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite 4%.
The market’s losses on Tuesday added to what has already been a big sell-off so far in April: The Dow is down over 4%, the S&P 500 roughly 8% and the Nasdaq nearly 13%.
Stocks plunged, with the Dow shedding over 1,000 points last Friday (its biggest single-day loss in several years), and despite the major benchmarks posting gains on Monday, widespread selling looks to have resumed.
Shares of Big Tech companies, which have been hard hit this year as investors worry about the Federal Reserve raising interest rates, led the market declines yet again on Tuesday, while the Nasdaq sits firmly in bear market territory (now more than 20% off its record high).
Tech giants such as Microsoft and Alphabet both fell more than 3% ahead of reporting first-quarter earnings after the market close.
Shares of electric-vehicle maker Tesla, meanwhile, fell over 10% amid fears that billionaire CEO Elon Musk will sell some of his shares to finance his recently accepted buyout offer for social media company Twitter.
“Stocks are declining as Wall Street abandons the tech trade ahead of massive tech earnings later this week and as global slowdown fears remain front and center,” especially amid “jitters” about aggressive central bank tightening, says Edward Moya, senior market analyst for Oanda. “Inflation won’t let up anytime soon as the Russian headlines suggest the war in Ukraine could see further escalations.”
Of the 134 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported first quarter earnings so far, roughly 80% have beaten analyst expectations, according to Refinitiv data. There are growing signs of inflationary pressures on corporate profits in several industries, however, with experts warning that consumer spending could also take a hit. “The earnings blitz” has begun, but “overall it was not a good start,” says Moya.