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TSX, Wall Street surge at the start of trading

WATCH: Coronavirus around the world: March 13, 2020

Canada’s benchmark S&P/TSX composite index gained more than 700 points at the start of trading on Friday after its worst trading day since 1987.

Shares on Wall Street also staged a strong rebound at market open as investors hoped more fiscal easing would head off a global recession.

READ MORE: TSX, Wall Street keep dropping after triggering 2nd trading halt in a week

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 773.20 points, or 3.65 per cent, at the open to 21,973.82.

Coronavirus outbreak: Stocks plunge as Trump’s travel ban stuns Wall Street
Coronavirus outbreak: Stocks plunge as Trump’s travel ban stuns Wall Street

The S&P 500 opened higher by 89.35 points, or 3.60 per cent, at 2,569.99. The Nasdaq Composite gained 408.59 points, or 5.67 per cent, to 7,610.39 at the opening bell.

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Market watchers greeted the bounce-back with a sigh of relief after witnessing the steepest sell-off on North American markets in three decades,

On Thursday the escalating coronavirus emergency sent the TSX down more than 1,700 points, or 12 per cent.

Financial experts talk economic impact of the coronavirus
Financial experts talk economic impact of the coronavirus

The S&P 500 plummeted 9.5 per cent, for a total drop of 26.7 per cent from its all-time high, set just last month. That put the index way past the 20 per cent threshold to make this a bear market, snapping an unprecedented, nearly 11-year bull-market run. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 10 per cent for its worst day since a nearly 23 per cent drop on Oct. 19, 1987.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Travel, event cancellations could help the economy in the long run

European markets lost 12 per cent in one of their worst days ever, even after the European Central Bank pledged to buy more bonds and offer more help for the economy.

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The heavy losses came amid a cascade of cancellations and shutdowns across the globe — including Trump’s suspension of most travel to the U.S. from Europe — and rising worries that the White House and other authorities around the world can’t or won’t counter the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic any time soon.