Stocks fell on Thursday as worries that China's rapid economic growth may lead to more aggressive measures to tackle inflation offset encouraging U.S. labor market data.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> dropped 37.38 points, or 0.32 percent, to 11,787.91. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> fell 5.65 points, or 0.44 percent, to 1,276.27. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was off 17.01 points, or 0.62 percent, to 2,708.35.