The Australian share market has suffered its worst day in over four years, closing the day at a six-month low amid a growing panic over the coronavirus outbreak.

The S&P/ASX200 index finished on Friday down 216.7 points, or 3.25 per cent, at 6,441.2, while the broader All Ordinaries index plummeted 225.9 points, or 3.35 per cent, to 6,511.5 points.

For the week the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index lost 697.8 points, or 9.77 per cent, for its second-worst losses ever, exceeded only by a 15.65 per cent dive in October 2008 during the global financial crisis.

Since hitting an all-time high of 7,197.2 on Thursday, February 20, it has declined for six straight days, losing 756 points, or 10.5 per cent of its value – taking it into correction territory.

Friday’s drop was the worst since a 3.8 per cent, 195-point dive on September 29, 2015.

The Aussie dollar meanwhile was buying 65.20 US cents, its lowest level since February 2009, down from 65.50 US cents at the market close on Thursday.