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Stocks Slump After Trump Halts Coronavirus Stimulus Talks Until After Election

Stock prices dropped sharply Tuesday, erasing earlier gains, after President Trump called on his representatives to stop negotiating with Democrats on another coronavirus stimulus package until after the November election.

Trump's message, contained in a tweet, came hours after Federal Reserve Jerome Powell had urged Congress in a speech to provide another round of pandemic relief, saying it's better to do too much than too little.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which had been up more than 200 points earlier in the day, suddenly reversed course and retreated as much as 413.5 points at one point.

The Dow ended the day down 376 points, or down 1.3%. The S&P 500 lost 1.4%, while the Nasdaq composite index lost 1.6%.

Airlines, which have been counting on a new aid package from Congress to avoid furloughing workers, saw their shares slide. United Airlines ended down 3.65%, while Delta Airlines lost 3%. American Airlines fell 4.5%.

At the same time, tech giants Apple, Netflix and Amazon, which have been among the top gainers this year, continued to lose ground, falling more than 2% each.

Stock investors have been hoping for additional economic relief from Congress, which passed several relief bills earlier in the pandemic, including the $2.2 trillion CARES Act.

The economy has recovered somewhat from the worst of the coronavirus recession, but Powell has repeatedly called for additional support from lawmakers.

On Tuesday, he said in a speech to the National Association for Business Economics that the recovery is far from complete – echoing comments he made to NPR during an interview last month.

But hopes for additional relief in the near term were dashed after Trump called on his representatives to stop negotiating with Democrats.

"I have instructed my representatives to stop negotiating until after the election when, immediately after I win, we will pass a major Stimulus Bill that focuses on hardworking Americans and Small Business," Trump tweeted.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit

Jim Zarroli is an NPR correspondent based in New York. He covers economics and business news.
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