US stocks fell sharply in early trade amid renewed euro-zone debt concerns and speculation that China may step up measures to curb inflation. A set of disappointing economic data, including Producer Price Index and industrial production, also dampened the sentiment.
S&P 500 Index is down 10.42 points, or 0.85 percent, to trade at 1,187.57 at 09:53 a.m. EDT. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 99.57 points, or 0.89 percent, to trade at 11,102.40. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.72 percent.
Producer Price Index (PPI) for the month of October rose for the fourth straight month to 0.4 percent in October, but below economists' expectations of a 0.8 percent rise. The advance followed a 0.4 percent rise in both September and August.
The index for finished goods less foods and energy fell 0.6 percent in October after increasing in each of the prior eleven months.
Industrial production was flat in October, after falling for the first time in a year to 0.2 percent in September. Economists' expected production to have improved to 0.30 percent in October.
The capacity utilization rate for total industry was flat at 74.8 percent, a rate 6.6 percentage points above the low in June 2009 and 5.8 percentage points below its average from 1972 to 2009, a Fed report showed.
On the corporate front, Retail giant Walmart reported 9 percent growth in its quarterly profit on strong sales at its international operations and also raised its fiscal 2011 outlook. Its shares are up 2.39 percent to $55.24 in early trade.
General Motors raised the estimated price for its initial public offering of 365 million shares to $32 to $33 a share from its prior range of between $26 and $29 per share
On the housing front, NAHB Housing Market Index is expected to show a reading of 15.00 for October, compared to the prior month’s 16.00.
The euro advanced 0.09 percent to 1.3600 against the dollar while the greenback pared earlier gains to lose 0.06 percent against the yen.
Crude oil futures declined 1.46 percent to $85.49/barrel and gold futures fell 1.13 percent.
European stock markets added losses and are currently trading lower with U.K. FTSE 100 down by 82.17 points, German DAX30 losing 57.91 points and French CAC 40 down by 57.73 points.
Among Asian stocks, China's Shanghai Composite fell 4 percent on speculation that the country may step up measures to curb rising prices.