March 17 (UPI) -- The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up more than 1,000 points on Wall Street Tuesday after steep losses a day earlier that saw the index's largest single-day drop since 1987.
The Dow closed up 1,048.86 points, or 5.2 percent, while the S&P 500 rose 6 percent and the Nasdaq composite increased 6.23 percent as President Donald Trump announced an $850 billion economic stimulus program in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the program would include payments to small businesses, loan guarantees to travel industries and stimulus for American workers as well as proposals for deferring $300 billion in taxes for as many as 90 days without interest or penalty, and a $10 billion investment to allow the Federal Reserve to buy up to $1 trillion in corporate debt for companies facing bankruptcy due to a lack of liquidity.
The package also includes about $50 billion earmarked to assist the U.S. airline industry amid lack of passenger demand due to the coronavirus that has caused stocks to plummet.
Tuesday's rebound comes after Trump said Monday the United States "may be" heading toward a recession as concerns about the virus and declining world oil prices over the past week have affected U.S. indices.
The Dow briefly dipped below the 20,000-mark early Tuesday for the first time since February 2017, not even a month after President Donald Trump took office. A few days after his inauguration, the Dow hit 20,000 for the first time.
"There are monetary and fiscal policies that are being put in place to try to ease financial market concerns, but this is ultimately a health issue," Tom Meyers, CEO And managing partner at Bordeaux Wealth Advisors told USA Today. "We're going to need to see data that shows the severity of this virus situation is abating and getting better. Markets are assuming the worst right now."