- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Fresh economic data showing softness in the Chinese economy sent U.S. and global stocks plummeting Tuesday, with the blue-chip Dow Jones index of top stocks down some 469 points, or 2.84 percent, to 16,058, and the broader S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq market also posting losses of more than 2 percent for the day.

All three major markets are now in what traders call a “correction” — down at least 10 percent from their recent highs. At its lowest point, the Dow was off over 548 points Tuesday.

Companies with a larger exposure to the slowing Chinese market, including Apple and Tesla Motors, were particularly hard hit in the sell-off. It was the third biggest daily loss of the year, exceeded only by losses in the past couple of weeks during a period of wild volatility on world equity markets.

The rout was sparked by news that the official measure of Chinese manufacturing fell to a three-year low last month, sending shares on the Shanghai Composite Index down 1.2 percent. The index has plunged 38 percent since hitting a peak in June, despite efforts by the Chinese government to contain the losses.

Separately, an index of U.S. manufacturing also fell Tuesday to its lowest mark since May 2013. That fueled investor fears that China’s slowdown and the strong U.S. dollar were cutting into American high-end exports.

Markets in Europe were broadly lower, with Germany’s DAX down 2.4 percent, France’s CAC-40 falling 2.4 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 index falling 3 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 was also volatile, dropping 3.8 percent. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong sank 2.2 percent. Stocks also fell in South Korea and Australia.

This article was based in part on wire service reports.

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