A change in tone from President Trump regarding the coronavirus pandemic may have contributed to the stock market decline on Wednesday. Trump warned that the next two weeks will be painful, even with social distancing in effect. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI) was down 3.5% at 12:10 p.m. EDT today.
Johns Hopkins University now puts the total confirmed cases in the U.S. above 190,000, with more than 4,100 deaths. Both numbers will likely rise sharply over the next two weeks.
Shares of Disney (NYSE: DIS) and Home Depot (NYSE: HD) were down on Wednesday along with the overall market. Disney slumped after an analyst reduced his price target, while Home Depot trended lower after the retailer provided a business update.
Disney price target slashed
Disney was flying high before the pandemic. The stock soared more than 30% in 2019, driven by a record year at the box office and the successful launch of the Disney+ streaming service. The parks, experiences, and products segment, Disney's largest, produced solid growth as well.
It's safe to say that 2020 is going to be a very different story. Disney has been forced to close its parks due to the pandemic; professional sports are on hiatus, dealing a heavy blow to ESPN; movie theaters are closed in many places, gutting Disney's movie business; and nonessential retail stores are shuttered, likely hurting sales of Disney-related merchandise.