Update: S&P drops 10% shortly after opening

It follows three weeks of market chaos. Some 16 per cent has been wiped from the S&P 500 since February 24, and last week the US government bond market — usually a strong diversifier against falling equities — was showing signs of strain.

Markets have also seen some of their biggest daily declines in 30 years as countries close borders and introduce lockdowns to curb the coronavirus crisis.

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