Tokyo stocks plummet as crisis deepens

Japan's Nikkei plummets 10.55%Click the chart for more on world markets. By CNNMoney staff


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Panic overtook investors in Japan on Tuesday, with stocks plunging more than 10%, as the nation's nuclear crisis deepened in the aftermath of last week's earthquake.

The Nikkei 225 index, the most prominent measure of Tokyo market stocks, was down 1,390 points -- or more than 14% -- at one point in the session.

In the end, the 10.6% closing marked the third worst one-day plunge in the Nikkei's history.

The huge losses on Tuesday came on top of a 6.2% drop Monday, the first full trading day after the quake. In all, the index has fallen nearly 16% in two days.

The Tokyo market opened shortly after the owner of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in northeastern Japan reported an "explosive impact" at the plant's No. 2 reactor, a day after a hydrogen explosion rocked another reactor. The plant was among the many structures damaged or destroyed by the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

The confirmed death toll is 2,475. Thousands more are missing and 450,000 people are reported homeless. (CNN: Anxiety in Japan grows as rescue workers find more bodies)

Japanese officials said Monday they will backstop the country's financial system, with a cash injection of more than $180 billion, to buffer it against the impact of the disaster. Reports said the Bank of Japan added another $98 billion to that figure on Tuesday.

Other Asian markets were also hit by fears on Tuesday -- a day after modest gains in the face of the Japanese sell-off. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index dropped 3.1%, and the Shanghai Composite fell 1.6%.

European markets also closed sharply lower. Germany's DAX dropped 3.2%, while France's CAC-40 lost 2.5% and Britain's FT-100 retreated 1.4%.

U.S. stocks were mired in a sharp sell-off Tuesday. The Dow Jones industrial average, Nasdaq and S&P futures were all down about 1.7% in afternoon trading.

World markets finished generally lower Monday, as investors assessed the impact of the Japanese disaster on the global economy.

--A CNN Wire report was used in compiling this story. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.01%4.03%
15 yr fixed3.12%2.97%
5/1 ARM3.11%2.99%
30 yr refi4.04%4.09%
15 yr refi3.15%3.05%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 17,804.80 26.65 0.15%
Nasdaq 4,765.38 16.98 0.36%
S&P 500 2,070.65 9.42 0.46%
Treasuries 2.18 -0.03 -1.27%
Data as of 9:53am ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 17.62 0.09 0.51%
Apple Inc 111.78 -0.87 -0.77%
General Electric Co 25.62 0.48 1.91%
Intel Corp 36.37 -0.65 -1.76%
Microsoft Corp 47.66 0.14 0.29%
Data as of Dec 19

Sections

New York Magazine reporter Jessica Pressler, who has been caught up in controversy this past week, will not be moving on to a new job at Bloomberg News. More

Investors beware: These 5 global crises are likely to rattle the stock market and world economy. More

Forums in dark corners of the web sell the kinds of hacks that befell Sony. More

Unilever sued Hampton Creek over its egg-free mayonnaise spread Just Mayo. But the company behind Best Foods and Hellman's mayonnaise has now dropped the lawsuit. More

The income of the top 1% jumped significantly in 2012, far outpacing inflation. Not only did this group make a larger share of the country's income, their share of total taxes also jumped from 35% to 38%. More

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.