Every sector is in negative territory with energy and materials down an astonishing 5% each whilst the best performing sector, healthcare, is down 2.5%.
The board is a sea of red, with ASX top 20 names such as AMP, Western Areas, News Corp, Woodside, Rio, and Alumina all down more than 5% each.
In company news, Programmed (PRG) announced that trading in 1Q12 it is tracking in line with its budget. Despite the positive assurance, the stock is down 6%.
Around the region, Asian markets are suffering the same fate; the Hang Seng is down 4.3% whilst eh Nikkei is 3.3% weaker.