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Wall Street surged on Thursday, bringing an upbeat end to a tumultuous, holiday-shortened week as technology stocks rebounded, but the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted their biggest quarterly declines in more than two years.

Specialist Thomas McArdle, left, works with traders John Panin, center, and Jeffrey Vazquez on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, April 2, 2018.

The market got off to a shaky start, wobbled for much of the day, then surged in the last hour of trading.

"Although the macroeconomic impact of tariffs may appear limited when measured by the dollar value of goods affected, if such tariffs are seen by global market participants as signaling an escalation in trade tensions, they will eventually have a broader macroeconomic impact by dampening market sentiment as well as business investment decisions", said Atsi Sheth, managing director at Moody's Investors Service said in a note to clients.

US technology companies are in the spotlight, notably Amazon, which posted hefty losses of around 5 per cent Monday after Trump again voiced his concerns about the company on Twitter. Netflix also gained 1 percent while Amazon rose 1.1 percent. Walmart stock fell 4.5 per cent on the news.

"The big question is how far the current tremor in the equity market will affect bonds, given it is driven by a single company - even if it is a tech giant having a huge market weight", said DZ Bank strategist Christian Lenk.

Retaliatory tariffs imposed by China on a slew of US exports and Mr. Trump's ongoing criticism of Amazon (AMZN) helped push equities into a downward spiral.

Britain Preparing 'Proportionate' Response to Russia After Spy Poisoning by Nerve Agent
A former Russian general has warned world is on the brink of "the last war in the history of mankind" over the poisoning of a spy. He insisted that "serious experts and "leaders of a whole number of countries" were questioning Britain's account of the crime".

TRADE FEARS: China raised import duties on a $3 billion list of US goods in response to USA tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.

His new, unilateral trade steps, though, shocked many USA businesses and foreign leaders, particularly because Trump had taken a more cautious approach in his first year, seeming to dial back some of the populist trade rhetoric he made during the 2016 campaign. The Nasdaq composite slumped 212 points, or 3 percent, to 6,850.

Volume on US exchanges was 7.49 billion shares, compared to the 7.29 billion average over the last 20 trading days. Tesla Inc., the heavily indebted electric vehicle maker, is struggling to explain what caused a fatal accident last month in which one of its vehicles crashed into a concrete lane divider while on autopilot. In a span of nine weeks, investors have lost $3 trillion in market wealth and about a third of the gains since President Trump was elected has been erased.

PRIME TARGET: Amazon fell another $70.84, or 4.9 percent, to $1,376.50. Silver fell 1.7 percent to $16.39 an ounce.

Wholesale gasoline added 1 cent to $1.97 a gallon and heating oil rose 1 cent to $2 a gallon.

That deflated some previously high-fliers including Amazon, Microsoft and Facebook.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 3.66-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.23-to-1 ratio favored advancers. The euro fell to $1.2267 from $1.2300.