Stocks, bonds, and commodities around the world are getting hit by a double-whammy.
First, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke suggested that strengthening economic data could all the Fed to start tapering, or gradually reducing, its stimulative bond-buying plan. This seemed to be behind a bond market sell-off.
Second, China reported that manufacturing activity was decelerating at a higher clip than expected in June. China is the world's second largest economy and it is also a key source of global economic growth. As such it is also one of the big consumers of commodities.
All of this slammed markets in Asia.
- Japan's Nikkei closed down 1.7%.
- Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed down 2.6%.
- Australia's S&P/ASX closed down 2.1%.
And now Europe is getting pummeled.
- England's FTSE is down 1.4%.
- France's CAC 40 is down 1.6%.
- Germany's DAX is down 1.8%.
- Spain's IBEX is down 1.3%.
- Italy's FTSE MIB is down 0.9%.
And the U.S. markets, where the sell-off began, hasn't finished tumbling. Dow futures are down by 50 points.
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