- S&P 500 dropped 0.5 percent to 4,444.88, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.8 percent to 14,708.43
NEW YORK: Wall Street stocks fell early Monday following disappointing Chinese economic data amid rising expectations the Federal Reserve will soon announce plans to taper its stimulus program.
Analysts cited weaker-than-expected China retail sales and industrial output as the latest sign the Delta variant of Covid-19 is slowing the economic recovery.
The United States has also seen a sharp uptick in Covid-19 infections, with some cities reimposing mask mandates, and data showing signs of eroding confidence and slowing activity.
About 35 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.7 percent at 35,285.21.
The broad-based S&P 500 dropped 0.5 percent to 4,444.88, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.8 percent to 14,708.43.
The Dow and S&P 500 ended at records on Friday, setting their fourth consecutive all-time high close.
Markets also are fixated on the Fed's plans following comments in recent days from central bank officials suggesting an announcement on trimming asset purchases could be imminent.
The Fed will release its minutes from the July meeting later this week.
Markets are keeping an eye on the upheaval in Afghanistan, but analysts do not expect a significant impact on trading.
Among individual companies, Tesla fell 3.6 percent as US authorities announced a probe of its Autopilot driver-assistance service, citing 11 crashes.