Asian and European stock market indexes are down sharply today as investors worry they might have difficulty getting access to credit.
In Japan the Nikkei was down more than two percent at the close while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was off almost three percent. Major European indexes were off between one-and-a-half percent and three percent in afternoon trading. U.S. stocks were down as today's trading got underway.
Problems in the U.S. subprime mortgage sector are causing lenders to be more cautious about making loans, sparking worries that a lack of loan money will slow the economy and hurt profits.
In an attempt to ease those concerns, central banks around the world, including those in Japan, the United States and Europe, have been injecting billions of dollars into the financial system.