Stocks fell on Tuesday as high oil prices raised concern about the impact of oil prices on the economy's outlook and disappointing bank earnings fueled caution about profit growth.
Wells Fargo & Co, the fifth largest U.S. bank, posted the smallest quarterly profit gain in more than six years.
Shares of financial services companies, homebuilders and retailers were among the market's top decliners, along with technology shares.
A barrel of U.S. crude for November delivery rose 0.5 percent to $86.55 on the New York Mercantile Exchange after earlier hitting a record $87.97 a barrel due to Middle East tension.
Investors worry that higher energy costs will hurt U.S. consumers and businesses just as the economy grapples with fallout from the housing slump and the effects of the credit squeeze.
Crude is certainly a concern, said Cleveland Rueckert, market analyst at Birinyi Associates Inc. in Stamford, Connecticut. In addition, the earnings aren't terribly exciting right now, he said.
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 45.20 points, or 0.32 percent, at 13,939.60. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 6.85 points, or 0.44 percent, at 1,541.86. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 14.80 points, or 0.53 percent, at 2,765.25.
KeyCorp, a large Midwest bank, posted a third-quarter profit that fell short of estimates, hurt by a doubling of loan losses and volatility in fixed-income markets. Its shares dropped 3.8 percent to $31.13 on the NYSE.
Wells Fargo shares fell 4 percent to $34.52 on the New York Stock Exchange after it said profit was hurt by credit pressures from mortgage, home equity and auto loans.
It was the top drag on the S&P 500, followed by Citigroup Inc., the largest U.S. bank, whose stock dropped 1.8 percent to $45.44.
Among retailers, shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the world's biggest retailer, slid 1.3 percent to $45.88 on the NYSE.
Shares of D.R. Horton Inc, the largest U.S. home builder, fell more than 3 percent to $13.15 after it said quarterly net orders for new homes slid 39 percent in another sign of the housing slump.