Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Stocks fall as Chinese stocks take a hit

NEW YORK - Wall Street fell sharply in early trading Tuesday, joining a global stock decline on growing concerns about slowing economies in the U.S. and China. Worries that U.S. stocks are about to embark on a major correction fed the drop, which took the Dow Jones industrials down more than 120 points.

A 9 percent slide in Chinese stocks earlier set the tone for the opening of trading. Concerns that China's economy will slow sent many investors selling just a day after they sent Shanghai's benchmark index to a record high close.

A warning from former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan Monday that the U.S. economy may be headed for a recession also took a toll. A Commerce Department that orders for durable goods in January dropped by the largest amoung in three months exacerbated concerns about the economy, as did a Standard & Poor's index showing single-family home prices across the nation were flat in December.

In the first hour of trading, the Dow Jones industrial average dropped 123.69, or 0.98 percent, to 12,508.57.

Broader stock indicators also fell sharply. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was down 17.96, or 1.24 percent, to 1,431.41, and the Nasdaq composite index was down 49.13, or 1.96 percent, to 2,455.39.


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