The FTSE 100 has closed the day down by more than a 10th as fears over coronavirus sparked the index’s worst bloodbath since 1987.
Investors ran scared from London’s shares as the index closed on Thursday down by 639.04 points to 5237.48.
It wiped more than £160 billion off the value of the index’s 100 companies.
The 10.87% fall is the biggest on London’s top index since October 20, 1987, the day after Black Monday, when the FTSE 100 fell 12.2%.
It is also the second worst day in the FTSE’s history, ahead of the 10.84% fall on Black Monday itself.
It throws the index down to its lowest closing point since 2011.
It came after the World Health Organisation upgraded Covid-19 to a global pandemic, US President Donald Trump ended travel from Europe to the US, and the European Central Bank unveiled a package to tackle the infection’s effect on the economy which did not include interest rate cuts.
“It is hard to keep coming up with new metaphors for the scale of disaster facing the global markets,” Spreadex analyst Connor Campbell said.