Global stock markets have been under pressure for a second day amid fears that problems in the US mortgage market will prompt a worldwide credit crunch.
Billions of dollars were wiped off share values, affecting businesses and individual investors alike.
New York's main Dow Jones share index fell 60.89 points, 0.5%, to 13,209.79.
London's FTSE 100 share index had its worst day in more than four years, losing 3.7%. The Paris Cac index fell 3.1% and Germany's main Dax fell 1.4%.
Analysts say the crisis could make it harder for banks, firms and consumers to get access to loans and cash.
Wooooohooooo doomsday for all the people in the western world, especially the UK and US, who have been borrowing recklessly to live far beyond their means is one big step closer. BBC News Report