In New York trading overnight, the Nasdaq composite with its hefty roster of tech stocks bore the brunt of the sell-off, falling more than 10 per cent below its August peak, what Wall Street calls a "correction". As markets opened on Thursday, the color was red: China's Shanghai Composite Index lost 2.5 per cent, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index 2.3 per cent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index also fell more than 2 per cent.
Europe attempted a rebound on Thursday after Wall Street's worst day since 2011 and heavy losses in Asia put global stocks firmly on course for their worst month since the financial crisis.
"Investors are on pins and needles", said Erik Davidson, chief investment officer at Wells Fargo Private Bank.
Nearly 60 percent of the 2,767 stocks in MSCI's global equity index are now in so-called "bear market" territory - down 20 percent or more from their most recent peaks.
Banks, health care and industrial companies also took heavy losses, outweighing gains by utilities and other high-dividend stocks.
"There has definitely been a change in sentiment for investors starting with the volatility we had last week". But this week, the biggest point of concern for investors including UOB Kay Hian (Hong Kong) Ltd.'s Steven Leung has been the USA dollar, which hit a new high Wednesday.
"The sentiment and the outlook seems to be turning more negative, or at the very least, less rosy".
Technology stocks also buckled and slid 2.14 percent, in tandem with global peers, over concerns of slowing growth in China and a tepid forecast from Apple supplier AMS AG's.
The S&P 500 fell 25 points, or 0.9 percent, to 2,730 as of 1:15 p.m. Yields on Treasuries rose and the U.S. dollar strengthened to the highest level this year - the Australian dollar edged slightly higher.
Twitter rose 18.6 percent after strong ad sales boosted third-quarter profit, while Comcast gained 18.6 percent after the media company's quarterly results beat Wall Street estimates. The report is the latest sign that the housing market is cooling amid rising mortgage rates. Alphabet also just reported its Q3 2018 results, with earnings of $33.74 billion - up 21 per cent from the same quarter a year ago but not beating expectations.
Boeing jumped 3.3 per cent after beating analysts' earnings forecasts. Even the dollar eased to 112.08 yen.
The December crude contract was down US$1.95 at US$67.41 per barrel and the November natural gas contract was up 8.2 cents at US$3.22 per mmBTU.
The results offered hope to Wall Street, battered this week by a series of sluggish outlooks from manufacturers and chipmakers anxious about the impact of tariffs, a slowdown in China on profits and global growth. The euro rose to $1.1486 from $1.1466.