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Australia: Shares slump 7.4% on Thursday, worst drop since 2008

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Australian stocks plunged 7.4 per cent on Thursday, the worst one-day drop since the financial crisis in 2008, hammered by fears over the economic impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

[SYDNEY] Australian stocks plunged 7.4 per cent on Thursday, the worst one-day drop since the financial crisis in 2008, hammered by fears over the economic impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The ASX 200 tumbled 421.3 points to end at 5,304.6 after US President Donald Trump announced a ban on travel from Europe, while an US$11 billion stimulus unveiled by Canberra to counter the virus outbreak failed to raise investor confidence.

Travel-related stocks were among the biggest losers with Webjet down 20 per cent, Flight Centre off 19.6 per cent and Qantas losing 9.9 per cent. AFP