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Stocks slump on global growth worries

Stock indexes swung to losses early Tuesday, Sept.

Stock indexes swung to losses early Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015, as investors picked over data and worried about global grown. This specialist Michael O'Mara was working at the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 25, 2015. Credit: AP / Richard Drew

Stocks dropped with a thud Tuesday, as investors uncertain about global growth backed out of commodities like oil and copper and dragged raw-material shares lower.

At the close on Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average had fallen 179.7 points, about 1.1 percent, to 16,330.5. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 24.2 points, about 1.2 percent, to 1,942.7, and the Nasdaq composite was down 72.2 points, about 1.5 percent, at 4,756.7.

CRUDE ENERGY: As markets closed, the price of oil was down 77 cents at $46.19 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

METALS SINK: Copper led losses in industrial metals and zinc fell to a five-year low on concerns that a weakening economy will reduce demand in China, the world's biggest metals user.

ANALYST'S OPINION: "With macro uncertainty and very little fundamentals overall, when you see a rise in volatility it leads to investor uncertainty and any bad news has the opportunity to shake things up," said analyst Joseph Betlej, who helps oversee $33 billion as vice president of Advantus Capital Management. "It's a hangover from last week's Fed move. Yesterday was just a little bounce."

FED TALK: Equities got a boost Monday after a quartet of Fed officials talked up prospects for higher rates in 2015, just days after the central bank jolted investors by citing global market turmoil and a slowdown in China as reasons for standing pat. Their remarks suggested continued improvement in the domestic economy may overshadow concerns about global conditions.

Reports from The Associated Press and Bloomberg News were used in this story.

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