NEW YORK: Wall Street's major averages closed sharply lower on Monday as market sentiment was dented by a historic drop in US crude prices.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 592.05 points, or 2.44 per cent, to 23,650.44. The S&P 500 was down 51.40 points, or 1.79 per cent, to 2,823.16. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 89.41 points, or 1.03 per cent, to 8,560.73, Xinhua reported.
All the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended lower, with utilities and real estate down 3.89 per cent and 3.74 per cent, respectively, the two worst-performing groups.
Energy shares were also under pressure with the sector closing down 3.29 per cent, after a nosedive in oil prices on demand shock and a supply glut.
The West Texas Intermediate for May delivery shed more than 300 percent to settle at -37.63 USD a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It marks the first time an oil futures contract has traded negative in history, according to Dow Jones Market Data.
Investors continued to gauge the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of Monday afternoon, more than 776,000 confirmed cases have been reported in the US, with 41,313 deaths, according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.