stock market

Updated at 4:45 p.m. ET

U.S. stock markets fell sharply Thursday, with the Dow Jones industrial average tumbling 1,033 points, or 4 percent, to 23,860.

Other major stock indexes also dropped Thursday. The S&P 500 fell 101 points, or 3.8 percent, and the Nasdaq index fell 275 points, or 3.9 percent.

With the latest drops, both the Dow and the broader S&P 500 are down more than 10 percent from their peaks on Jan. 26, which constitutes a market correction.

The stock market swung dramatically up and down on Wednesday, ending about where it started the day — after record losses earlier in the week. President Trump's top economic adviser says it's important to keep the volatility in context.

"The fact is that the fundamentals for the economy are very sound," Kevin Hassett says in an interview with NPR. "Wages are going up a lot. Even in the employment report that came out last week, we saw the highest rate of wage growth in about a decade."

The stock market's been charging higher lately. After the Dow Jones industrial average topped 20,000 for the first time in history in January, it kept surging to close above 21,000 earlier this week. So what's going on with the stock market and what does it mean for your retirement account?

President Trump likes to tout the booming stock market as evidence that he is already boosting the economy. He bragged about it in his speech to Congress on Tuesday night, and then got more to the point on Wednesday, when the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 21,000 for the first time.

Updated 10:28 a.m. ET

On Tuesday night, as the presidential election's outcome headed toward an unexpected Trump victory, stock futures plunged. Investors had bet heavily Monday on Democrat Hillary Clinton. As Republican Donald Trump picked up many more votes than polls had predicted, markets reacted violently to the change in expectations.

No question, this was a traumatic, sad week because of the mass shooting in San Bernardino, Calif. It's not easy to turn to good news.

But putting grief aside for a moment, there were indeed positive developments for the country in recent days. With cheaper energy, more jobs and higher stock prices, most Americans have been seeing their financial situations improve. Here are some of this week's highlights:

On December 31st, the George W. Bush era tax cuts will expire and new tax hikes take effect. The combination of the two will send the effective top tax bracket rate on stock dividends up to over 43 percent, from 15 percent.