Stocks plunge on weak economic news, oil-price swings

Weak economic news from China, the U.S. and Spain combined with a slump in oil companies sent stocks sharply lower. The Dow Jones industrial average had its biggest one-day drop since August.

Investors were jarred Thursday when China reported a surprise trade deficit. China’s exports fell in February as businesses closed for the weeklong Lunar New Year holiday, but imports of higher-priced oil and other goods jumped.


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