Trump's latest attempt to calm markets only makes stocks fall more

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The Dow opened down more than 1,600 points, triggering an automatic stop to trading for the second time in as many weeks.

Donald Trump attempted to mitigate investors' fears about the novel coronavirus and stop the stock market slide with an address to the nation Wednesday night.

However, following the address — in which he announced a travel ban for most of Europe, getting facts about his own administration's policy wrong in the process — the market slide more.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened down 1,696 points — erasing another 7% from the market, according to trading data. It triggered yet another automatic stop to trading for the second time in two weeks.

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The S&P 500 — a leading economic indicator that tracks the performance of the top 500 public companies — also slid 7% when markets opened, trading data show.

This comes a day after the Dow slid into a "bear market," a trading term for when stock prices fall 20% from a recent high, according to Investopedia.

Global stock markets are faring equally poorly.

Trump has tried to downplay the impacts of COVID-19 disease as he fears a falling economy could imperil his reelection chances.

His administration, as well as some GOP lawmakers, have claimed that the media is overplaying the virus in order to hurt Trump's chances in November.

It's a baseless claim, as public health experts have issued dire warnings about how a failure to stop the spread of COVID-19 disease could completely overwhelm the United States health care system. They've recommended canceling large-scale events in order to flatten the curve — or stop the rapid increase in cases so as not to swamp hospitals and doctors offices.

As stocks began to tumble in late February, Trump said the market is "starting to look very good to me!"

The market has only fallen since then.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.