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Global sell-off brings back memories of worst Wall Street crashes

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US stocks plunged in highly volatile trading on Monday, with both the S&P 500 and Dow Industrials indices slumping more than 4 percent. The Dow notched its biggest intraday decline in history with a nearly 1,600-point drop, while Wall Street erased its gains for the year.

The sharp dip in the Dow sent shock waves across global equities. Indian markets reacted with an over 1,000-point plunge in the 30-share Sensex.

Here's a quick look at some of the worst Wall St crashes:

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> The Brexit shock, 2016

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On June 24, 2016, Wall Street ended with its single worst day performance since exactly the same day in August a year earlier, when UK voters』 decision to leave the EU fueled massive market sell-offs.

The Dow dipped 611 points, or 3.4 percent, to end the day at 17,399. The S&P 500 lost 76 points, or 3.6 percent, to close at 2,037, and the Nasdaq fell 202 points, or 4.1 percent, to end at 4,707. The Dow and S&P 500 each lost 1.6 percent for the week, while the Nasdaq sank 1.9 percent.

All three major indices erased year-to-date gains by falling over three percent, with the Dow falling 611.21 points, or 3.4 percent, to close at 17,399.86.

> The Financial crisis, 2008

The Financial Crisis of 2007 – 2008, also known as the Global Financial Crisis, is considered to have been the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. It began in 2007 with a crisis in the subprime mortgage market in the US, and developed into a full-blown international banking crisis in 2008.

During that period, Dow Jones suffered what was then its biggest one-day point drop ever on September 29, 2008, losing seven percent, or 778 points, after lawmakers failed to adopt a USD 700 billion bailout plan - erasing more than USD 1 trillion in market value.

Amid speculations that Congress would not be able to pass a rescue plan to unfreeze US credit markets, investors dumped all their stocks.

> Attacks of September 11, 2001

The New York Stock Exchange was evacuated after the attacks. Stock markets as well as nearly all banks and financial institutions on the Wall Street were shut for a calendar week after terror attacks on New York and Washington left close to 3,000 people dead.

Wall Street fell steeply in the week after the attacks, with the Dow sinking 7.1 percent, or 684 points on September 17, the first day trading resumed.

The attacks had resulted in approximately USD 40 billion in insurance losses, making it one of the largest insured events ever.

> August 2011 stock market fall 

The August 2011 stock markets fall was a sharp drop in stock prices in exchanges across the US, Middle East, Europe and Asia. Dow sank  4.6 percent drop, and rebounded 3.9 percent the next day.

The crash was caused by fears of contagion of the European sovereign debt crisis to Spain and Italy, as well as concerns over France’s current AAA rating, concerns over the slow economic growth of the US and its credit rating being downgraded.

> Black Monday

On October 19, 1987 - almost 58 years to the day after the Wall Street crash at the start of the Great Depression in 1929 - the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost a stunning 22.6 percent, falling 508 points to close at 1,738.74.

The stock markets around the world crashed, shedding a huge value in a very short time. The crash began in Hong Kong and spread west to Europe, hitting the US after other markets had already declined by a significant margin.

Analysts blamed the crash - which was the equivalent of more than 5,500 points in today's terms - on factors including selling in computerized trade, over-valuation, illiquidity, market psychology and collapsing oil prices.

> The Crash of 1929

The Wall Street Crash of 1929, also known as the Great Crash, began on October 24, 1929 and it was the most devastating stock market crash in US history in terms of full extent and duration of its aftereffects.

On October 28, 1929, the Dow fell 12.8 percent, or 38.33 points, the height of the worst financial panic Americans had ever seen, feeding into misery that would last for years.

The crash followed the London Stock Exchange’s crash of September 1929 and it contributed to the following 10-year Great Depression that affected all Western industrialized countries.

Markets had soared in the 1920s, based to a large extent on deceit, speculation and unsustainable margin-buying, before falling off a cliff. Analyst believe that the overall, prosperity and unregulated business had led to a very active and volatile stock market, which – combined with lack of clear banking practices to protect investments – eventually caused the crash.

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