Markets Slump as Washington Standoff Deepens

Stocks fall in U.S., Europe, Asia

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Andrew Harnik / The Washington Times / Landov

The ongoing government shutdown and the looming threat that the political gridlock will cause the United States to default on its debt was rattling markets around the world Monday morning.

Dow Jones futures were down more than 0.75 percent Monday morning, while Nasdaq futures were down around 0.7 percent . Futures on the S&P 500 had fallen more than 0.8% percent. In Japan, the Nikkei had fallen more than 1.22 percent, while stocks in Hong Kong were down more than 0.7 percent. Stock indexes in Germany and the United Kingdom were down more than half-a-percentage point, while the French exchange had fallen a quarter of a point.

The slump marks a change from Friday, when markets rose briefly on optimism that Republicans and Democrats in the United States would come to agreement on a budget to reopen the government, which has been partially shuttered since last Tuesday. Investors are growing increasingly anxious as the crisis deepens, with a much more dangerous deadline looming on Oct. 17, when the U.S. will run out of borrowing authority and risk an unprecedented sovereign debt default unless Congress raises the debt ceiling.