Stocks finish lower as shutdowns ramp up

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U.S. stocks closed sharply lower Wednesday, weighed down by fresh signs of COVID-19’s ability to disrupt the economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 344 points, 1.2%, to close near 29,437, based on preliminary numbers, while the S&P 500 fell 42 points, 1.2%, and closed near 3,568. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 98 points, 0.8%, at the close, ending at about 11,802. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said mid-afternoon that schools would close starting Thursday as the city’s coronavirus cases breached a key threshold. Still, some investors are looking past what’s likely to be an increasingly grim winter: shares of airline companies like Delta Air Lines Inc. and United Airlines Holding Inc. were among the day’s biggest winners.
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