The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 22.6%, which was the largest percentage drop on one-day trading in stock market history. The Dow Jones Industrial Average marked its biggest single-day point decline Monday afternoon, falling almost 1600 points in the hours of trading before recovering to finish 1,175. At the close of market day Thursday, Oct. 24, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 299.5, a 21% drop from a record high of 381.2. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 33 points on Thursday the 24th–a nine percent drop–on trades which were about three times normal volume per day during the first nine months of 1929.
Over four trading days–Black Thursday (Oct. 24 to Black Tuesday (Oct. 29)–the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell from 305.85 points to 230.07 points, representing a 25% decline in share prices. After days of volatility, the Dow recorded its two worst points drops in history. Stock prices fell for the first time on the 24th, rising briefly – and then fell off completely from Oct. 28 to 29.
With only one trading day left in the month of February, which is historically a strength for American stocks, the Dow dropped more than 1,190 points, with most of the selloff occurring during the last half-hour of trading. The first trading day of March brought the biggest single-day gain for the Dow 30, at 1,293.96 points, after stocks had their worst week of action since the financial crisis. Down 7 percent, it was a larger drop than the 684.81 plunge of Sept. 17, 2001, (the first post-9/11 trading day), and the S&P 500 also had its biggest one-day point drop since the 1987 crash, falling 8.8 percent, while the Nasdaq fell 9.1 percent, the biggest single-day point loss in eight years.
A couple weeks later, the Dow lost half its value (the S & P 500 and the Nasdaq composite index were not used as markers then) and entered a lengthy bear market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed only six points lower, after many large banks and investment firms bought large blocks of stocks in a successful attempt to stop the panic of the day.
Stocks had begun falling back in September of 1929, but two straight days at the end of October–the 28th and the 29th–saw nearly 13% declines and another near-12% drop, respectively. To put this days severity into perspective, the worst single-day decline on DJIA in the stock market crash of 1929 was a little more than 12% – in other words, just less than half of the drop seen on 1987s Black Monday. Black Monday, as the Monday is known today, marked the beginning of the decline.