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This Day In Market History: Iraq Invades Kuwait

This Day In Market History: Iraq Invades Kuwait

Each day, Benzinga takes a look back at a notable market-related moment that occurred on this date.

What Happened?

On this day 28 years ago, Iraq invaded Kuwait.

Where The Market Was

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 2,864.60 and the S&P 500 traded at 351.48. Today, the Dow is trading at 25,333.82 and the S&P 500 is trading at 2,813.36.

What Else Was Going On In The World?

In 1990, the skeleton of “Sue” the T-Rex was discovered in South Dakota, the most complete T-Rex skeleton ever found. Tim Berners-Lee published a proposal to create a World Wide Web consisting of hypertext, web pages, browsers and web servers. Average monthly rent in the U.S. was $465.

Catalyst For The First Gulf War

Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein ordered Iraqi troops to invade oil-rich Kuwait at around 2 a.m. local time, and within hours they had captured Kuwait City and gained control of about 20 percent of global oil reserves.

In the three days that followed, the Dow dropped 6 percent on fears about the impact the geopolitical tensions would have on the economy.

Within four days of the invasion, the United Nations Security Council banned all global trade with Iraq. On August 9, the U.S. launched Operation Desert Shield to drive Hussein out of Kuwait. By February 28, 1991, a ceasefire was declared and Iraq accepted the terms of surrender on April 6, 1991. Hussein remained in control of Iraq.

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Photo: Iraqi TV (AP Archive) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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