(CNBC) -- Stocks fell sharply in volatile trading on Tuesday as an emergency rate cut by the Federal Reserve failed to assuage concerns of slower economic growth due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The decision to cut rates by half a percentage point came two weeks before the Fed’s scheduled meeting as the central bank felt it was necessary to act quickly to combat the effect of the virus spreading worldwide. It’s the first such emergency action coming in between scheduled meetings since the financial crisis.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 789 points lower, or nearly 3%, after rising more than 300 points earlier in the day. The 30-stock average gyrated between sharp gains and solid losses after the decision was announced. The S&P 500 fell 2.8% while the Nasdaq Composite pulled back 3%.
Advertisement - story continues below