Markets

Coronavirus is going to 'paralyze China' — El-Erian warns against buying dips

Key Points
  • Economist Mohamed El-Erian is warning investors not to buy declines in the stock market like they might have done before the coronavirus.
  • "It is big. It's going to paralyze China. It's going to cascade throughout the global economy," said the Allianz chief economic advisor.
  • "We should pay more attention to this. And we should try and resist our inclination to buy the dip," El-Erian said.
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Don't buy the dip during the coronavirus sell-off, says Mohamed El-Erian

Economist Mohamed El-Erian is warning investors not to buy declines in the stock market like they might have done before the coronavirus.

The outbreak is going to take a major toll on the Chinese economy and hurt global growth, the Allianz chief economic advisor and ex-Pimco CEO told CNBC on Monday.

"For a long time I thought the market sentiment was so strong that we could overcome a mounting list of economic uncertainty," El-Erian said on "Squawk Box." "But the coronavirus is different. It is big. It's going to paralyze China. It's going to cascade throughout the global economy."

"Importantly, it cannot be countered by central bank policy," he added. "We should pay more attention to this. And we should try and resist our inclination to buy the dip."

U.S. stocks were higher at Wall Street's open Monday despite the overnight plunge in Chinese stocks.

On Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 603 points, or 2%, in its biggest single-session decline since August.

China's Shanghai composite on Monday nose-dived 7.7% on the first trading day there since the extended Lunar New Year holiday. Investors in China got their first chance to react to the widening coronavirus outbreak.

Confirmed cases in China rose to 17,205 with 361 deaths. On Monday, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam announced the city would suspend 10 of 13 border crossings with mainland China in an effort to curb the spread of the virus.

The Philippines on Sunday reported the first death outside of China.