RTTNews - Stocks moved sharply lower at the start of trading on Monday, with the major averages seeing some further downside after moving modestly lower over the course of the previous week. The initial weakness came amid concerns that the fundamentals do not support the recent rally.

Most of the major sectors have come under pressure in early trading, reflecting broad based selling pressure. Gold stocks are posting particularly steep losses amid a substantial decrease by the price of the precious metal.

While significant weakness is also visible among airline, housing, banking, and commercial real estate stocks, some health insurance stocks are bucking the downtrend by the broader markets.

The pullback by the markets is partly due to considerable weakness that has been seen in the overseas markets, with China's Shanghai Composite Index falling nearly 6 percent amid some concerns about the strength of the global economy.

Some negative sentiment was also generated by news that Lowe's (LOW) reported second quarter earnings that fell more than expected on weaker than expected sales. The home improvement retailer also provided disappointing guidance.

Traders have largely shrugged off a report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York showing that conditions for New York manufacturers improved for the first time in well over a year in the month of August.

The New York Fed said its general business conditions index rose to 12.1 in August from a negative 0.6 in July, with a positive reading indicating an expansion in the manufacturing sector. Economists had been expecting the index to increase more modestly to 3.0.

The major averages have continued to move lower in the past few minutes, falling to new lows for the young session. The Dow is currently down 184.62 at 9,131.64, the Nasdaq is down 45.43 at 1,940.09 and the S&P 500 is down 22.72 at 981.37.

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