A plane crash in New York, two months after the September 11 attacks, has sent stock markets plunging.
Key European indices fell by as much as 3.5 per cent immediately after the crash, driven down by airline stocks. British Airways dropped by almost 11 per cent, with Alitalia and Lufthansa falling by 10 and six per cent respectively.
"This is going to be very much a knee-jerk reaction," said analyst, David Thwaites, of BNP Paribas. "It shows how fragile the recovery we've seen over the past month really is."
New York's Dow Jones Index slumped nearly two per cent shortly after opening, while the Nasdaq 100 opened down 2.5 per cent.
Insurers hard hit
Insurers were also hit hard, as investors sold stocks amid fears of more massive claims on top of those for the September 11 attacks.
The dollar was also sharply down after Monday's crash in New York, but so-called safe stocks, including gold and other precious metals, as well as government bonds were sharply higher.
The airline and hotel sector has been suffering since the attacks, and analysts say the latest crash, whether a terrorist attack or not, is likely to further dent confidence in flying.
Stocks had recouped virtually all losses from the September 11 attacks, before falling again on Monday.
swissinfo with agencies
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