Global stock markets down 30-40%

James Ryan Jonas

Almost everyone knows by now that the US economic crunch is hurting stock markets worldwide. Huge losses are currently the trend and stock prices everywhere are plummeting.

How big are these declines, you ask? Check out the table below which summarizes the year-to-date losses of major global stock markets as of October 8 this year.

January to October 8, 2008 Performance of World Stock Markets
Source: Bloomberg  


From the list above, Russia’s Moscow Stock Exchange seems to be the worst hit, registering a 66% decline in value from the start of the year until October 8, 2008.

China’s Shanghai Stock Exchange, which used to be a biggest earner in the past years, is now one of the biggest losers with a 54.5% year-to-date loss.

Other emerging markets are experiencing steep declines as well, including Brazil, India, Egypt, and the Philippines.

Interestingly, the US New York Stock Exchange is down by “only” 26%, considering that it is there where all the subprime mess started.

This only goes to show that emerging markets are usually the victims whenever investors of developed countries move capital away from areas they perceive as risky. Most of the financial problems are in developed nations such as the US and yet, emerging countries seem to suffer more.

Stock markets worldwide are down 30-40% on the average, but with two more months remaining until the end of the year, no one knows if markets are going to recover or if the fall will continue even further.

Brace yourselves, then.

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James Ryan Jonas teaches business management, investments, and entrepreneurship at the University of the Philippines (UP). He is also the Executive Director of UP Provident Fund Inc., managing and investing P3.2 Billion ($56.4 Million) worth of retirement funds on behalf of thousands of UP employees.