Nikkei index closes more than 11 percent lower


TOKYO — Japan’s key stock index on Thursday plummeted more than 11 percent _ the biggest one-day loss since 1987 as sobering reports on the U.S. economy intensified recession fears.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock average nose-dived a staggering 1,089.02 points, or 11.41 percent, to close at 8,458.45, marking the biggest one-day percentage drop since the stock market crash of October 1987.

The broader Topix index also lost 9.52 percent to finish at 864.52.

The heavy selling in Tokyo comes after the Dow Jones industrial average plunged 7.8 percent Wednesday as jittery investors dumped shares on sobering reports on the U.S. economy.

“The massive sell-off on Wall Street triggered another selling in Tokyo,” said Kazuki Miyazawa, market analyst at Daiwa Securities SMBC Co. Ltd. “But what really depressed the U.S. and Japanese markets is growing fears of a global recession.”

The Nikkei index shed 9.55 percent in the morning session and extended losses further in the afternoon session as investors worried that the U.S. economy was heading for a recession.