Why Did the Stock Market Just Take a Late-Day Dive?

The stock market remained relatively flat during much of the day on Wednesday. However, by the end of the day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI), S&P 500 (SNPINDEX:^GSPC), and Nasdaq Composite (NASDAQINDEX:^IXIC) were all down around 1%. Much of the downward movement came in the final minutes of the trading day.


Percentage Change

Point Change




S&P 500



Nasdaq Composite



Data source: Yahoo! Finance.

It’s important not to throw around words like “crash” or “plunge” lightly, and moves this small don’t deserve those terms. However, a drop of more than 300 points for the Dow in the span of 90 minutes and a 165-point decline in just the last 18 minutes of trading aren’t necessarily everyday events. Below, we’ll look at what was behind all the late-day volatility.

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