Reversing an earlier decision to operate electronic-only today, regulators decided late Sunday night to shut down U.S. stock and options markets Monday, and possibly Tuesday. Exchanges and brokers said they were too worried about the integrity of markets and the safety of employees in the face of Hurricane Sandy, which is about to slam into the Northeast.
Bond markets will remain open, but will close at noon, eastern time.
Reuters reports that Wall Street banks, including Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, activated their emergency plans Sunday, which many firms put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
Sandy, a rare "super storm," created by an Arctic jet stream wrapped around a tropical storm, is expected to hit the East Coast tonight, brining torrential rain, high winds, severe flooding and power outages. Authorites are warning of possible widespread blackouts that could last for days.