— This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on February 6, Tuesday.
The first thing to know about the stock market's eye-watering slide Monday is that it wasn't caused by anything fundamental.
There was no particular piece of news that drove the major averages to capsize, in a move that sent the Dow industrials off close to 1600 points - a new intraday record - briefly in the final hour of trading.
Still, investors could be forgiven for having flashbacks about some of the market's most vicious drops. The Dow fell throughout the morning, but the dive that happened around 2:40 p.m. ET actually resembled the violent 2010 flash crash.
Back in May 6, 2010, the DOW plummeted by 9% in a couple of minutes but then covered most its early looses. In 2015, a futures trader was charged by the CFTC with illegally manipulating the stock market by layering and spoofing during the 2010 flash crash using E-mini S&P 500 futures contracts.
However, no trading desks contacted by CNBC reported trading issues in Monday's big sell-off.
Sure enough, markets recovered somewhat just as they did that on that May 6 event nearly eight years ago.
Instead, the market took on a mind of its own, where sentiment and likely some computer-programmed trading sent Wall Street into a bizarre tizzy. Fear brewed over a number of issues, with the biggest being trepidation about rising interest rates even though government bond yields actually were lower on the day.
[Jeffrey Kleintop] "This is purely a stock market phenonenmon, as you say, tightened a program trading. We know so far, as its clearly in the volitility markets, theres been the disconnect, there's imbalance of orders thats seem to let this spiraling down of markets. It doesnt mean its over, but these things do tend to correct themselves fairly quickly."
Others blamed the Fed for the market breakdown, or least the mentality that led to the selling climate.
The central bank, following its meeting last week, noted that inflation looked to be on the uptick. That put the market on notice, a point that was echoed when the government Friday said average hourly earnings rose 2.9 percent in January, the fastest move of the recovery.
Investors' minds quickly turned to a more aggressive central bank and the prospect of a faster pace of interest rate hikes.
[Brian Jacobsen, Cheif Portfolio Strategist] "What we've got here is just a little bit of fear inflation creeping into the markets and you get a little bit of correction. Now, what distinguish it from the bear market, if you get a 10% decline you get a correction, the bear market 20% when those fears become reality. But I dont think the fear of inflation is gonna become a reality."
Majority of analysts are saying that they are not worried about a correction, and some even say that this is the buy on dip opportunity that we've been talking about.
CNBC's Qian Chen, reporting from Singapore.