Plunging oil prices pounded U.S. stock markets again on Friday, with the Dow Jones industrial average closing down nearly 400 points, or more than 2 percent, and the other indices taking similar beatings. The Dow closed down 390.90 points, or 2.39 percent. The Standard & Poor's 500 index and Nasdaq Composite both also lost more than 2 percent of their value, with the former shedding 41.55 points, or 2.16 percent, and the latter closing down 126.59 points or 2.74 percent. Oil prices, which provided the markets with a respite by rallying on Thursday, were again the catalyst for sellers on Friday, as fears grew that Iranian oil would add to the worldwide glut.
Earlier the Dow had been down nearly 537 points.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.