Tech stocks sell off sharply as market looks at COVID-19 numbers, whispers ‘oh f***’

The American stock market is struggling today, with tech stocks in particular taking extra stick.

After European stocks tanked on the back of COVID-19 concerns, American stocks are following suit. Tech stocks in particular.

As of the time of writing, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, a venerable if dated stock market barometer, is off 2.81%. The broader and more useful S&P 500 is off 2.90%. And the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite is off 3.14%.

But perhaps most importantly for startups and startup founders, the SaaS-heavy Bessemer cloud index is off an even sharper 3.80%.

What’s going on? Stimulus is out of the cards for a while. COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are rising. Deaths are picking up too. Political gridlock is the law of the land. And weak earnings from Intel and Netflix, and lackluster guidance from Microsoft, could be weighing on tech-bulls. (Oh, and SAP flopped as well!)

In short, it’s a huge mess out there. More as it happens, but it’s not a great day for tech stocks and the sort of bullish public-market valuations that late-stage startups are using as private-market valuation comps.