Stocks added to losses on Wednesday after data showed the pace of existing home sales unexpectedly fell in January, while bank shares slid on continuing worries over the fate of the sector.
The tone was set early by disappointment President Barack Obama shed little new light about how his administration would stabilize the economy in a major speech before Congress.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> fell 141.46 points, or 1.92 percent, to 7,209.48. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> lost 15.88 points, or 2.05 percent, to 757.26. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was down 28.26 points, or 1.96 percent, at 1,413.57.
(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by James Dalgleish)