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Delta variant concerns affecting stock market and mask confidence

The more contagious COVID variant is shaking financial confidence, as more and more people mask up again.

CLEVELAND — The more contagious Delta variant of COVID-19 continues to take lives and shake financial confidence, and the effect could be hitting you in the wallet. 

Stocks suffered their biggest drop in months on Monday, and more and more people are masking up again.

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The CDC says more than half the country is not vaccinated - not only potentially jeopardizing their health and freedom, but their finances.

Concerns about inflation and a reboot of COVID surrounding the more contagious Delta variant walloped Wall Street. The NASDAQ and S&P 500 seeing their worst declines in months. The Dow dropped 2.1%, the S&P 500 dropped 1.6%, and the Nasdaq dropped 1.1%.

"The fears around the Delta variant caused the market to take a huge dip today. Markets are very reactive to risk, and the rise in the Delta variant and the increased hospitalizations in the US is giving investors pause," says Michael Goldberg, financial expert with Case Western Reserve's Weatherhead School of Management.

Right now, less than 49% of the US is fully vaccinated. The CDC says deadly Delta cases in vaccinated people are rare. They primarily happen in people 65 and older, the medically fragile, or the unvaccinated.

"At the moment, I feel like the vaccine’s been safe, and at the moment I’m not concerned about [the Delta variant]," says Chris Morford of Cleveland.

Others feel like it’s 2020 all over again.

"I’m equally as nervous now as I was when all this stuff began," says Christopher Price, visiting Cleveland from Toledo.

"We were hoping that more people would’ve gotten vaccinated, because the more people that are vaccinated, the harder it is for variants or anything to travel," says Dr. Claudia Hoyen, Director of Infection Control for University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital.

Out of a study of nearly 300,000 people with a single-dose of vaccine, the CDC says only 0.5% newly caught COVID. In people with both doses, just 0.1%. newly caught COVID. Infections of the Delta variant have spread to all 50 states, and experts say vaccines and vigilance remain vital.

"We saw that within the Indian continent there was a lot of illness and death that followed the Delta variant. Fortunately, it isn’t spreading nearly as fast as it could, or did, in India, because there are people that are vaccinated. However, it is really a concern in terms of all those who aren’t vaccinated and especially the kids. We have to remember we are still in a global pandemic," says Dr. Hoyen.

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