Fears of growing financial crisis as Walmart slashes thousands of jobs and Dow plummets

A stock market and inside Walmart GETTY

Walmart is cutting thousands of jobs as stores are axed

More than half of the Walmart stores due to be cut are in the US and many others are in Brazil.

Amid the cuts by the US retail giant the Dow also plunged more than 500 points in midday trading on Friday, falling below 16,000.

Dan Farley, regional investment strategist at US Bank, said Dow's plummet was due to oil.

He said: "People are uncertain, and when they're uncertain they're scared."

The price of oil today fell to its lowest level since 2004.

Mr Farley added: "When we started off the year, we were at the crossroads of concern and optimism and clearly, we've gone down the road of concern pretty quickly."

All of Walmart's 102 small-formal Express stores will be shut.

The cuts will see 16,000 people lose their jobs and is due to happen at the end of the month.

The CEO of Walmart Doug McMilon told investors that the company is trying to becoming efficient to compete with its competition, including Amazon.com.

Mr McMilon said: "Actively managing our portfolio of assets is essential to maintaining a healthy business.

“Closing stores is never an easy decision. But it is necessary to keep the company strong and positioned for the future.”

A Walmart sign GETTY

Most of the shops to be closed in the US are within 16 km of another Walmart

"When we started off the year, we were at the crossroads of concern and optimism and clearly, we've gone down the road of concern pretty quickly

Dan Farley, regional investment strategist at US Bank

Walmart has 4,500 stores in the US and its global workforce is 2.2million.

The news comes amid fears of a growing global financial crisis as China has seen a big stock market slide and fallen into bear market territory.

This is a market where share prices are falling and people are encouraged to sell.

In the US, stock markets have taken a big fall as Dow has reached its lowest level since August.

The price of oil, which has unsettled stock markets in recent weeks, also slumped again on Friday.

Chinese shares have also had a continued rough start to 2016, lowering deeper into negative territory.

Inside Walmart GETTY

Walmart operates a chain of hypermarkets, discount department stores and grocery stores

Concerns over China, which is the world's second-biggest economy, have hit oil and metal prices.

The FTSE-100 has slumped to its lowest closing level since the financial crisis in November 2012.

While the pound has dropped to $1.4296 against the dollar, a new five and a half year low.

Financial analysts have said the slump is due to fears over the health of the Chinese and US economies and the continued slide in the oil price, which has fallen by 20 per cent so far this year to below $30 a barrel.

concerned woman with the stock exchange GETTY

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged than 500 points today

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