Stocks mostly fell on Monday, weighed by profit taking after a two-month climb and news of several banks' share offerings that cooled interest in the financial sector.

The Nasdaq was slightly higher as buying of big-cap software makers' shares offset profit-taking.

With government stress tests on big banks out of the way, and after a steep rise since from March lows, investors opted to take gains on financial issues, sending JPMorgan Chase & Co down 5.7 percent to $36.71 and Bank of America Corp down 6 percent to $13.32.

U.S. Bancorp lost 6.1 percent to $19.30, Capital One fell 11.3 percent to $27.81, while BB&T Corp dropped 5.2 percent $24.97. The banks became the latest to seek additional capital by announcing stock offerings on Monday.

The KBW Bank index <.BKX>, up about 125 percent from its low set in early March, shed 4 percent as investors booked profits before the dilutive effects of the stock offerings. In comparison, the S&P 500 has risen nearly 35 percent from its March 9 closing low.

Banks had an incredible, extraordinary run. Who wouldn't be taking profits, even if they were not issuing stock? said Tom Alexander, head of Alexander Trading, in Savannah, Georgia.

Its not unusual to have a market, even in the strongest of trends, consolidate for a few days. Everything I'm seeing right now is normal and, in the context of the market, pretty healthy.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> fell 115.73 points, or 1.35 percent, to 8,458.92. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> dropped 14.71 points, or 1.58 percent, to 914.52. But the Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> edged up 1.08 of a point, or 0.06 percent, to 1,740.08.

Energy companies were a big drag on stock indexes as Chevron fell 3.4 percent to $68.00 and Exxon Mobil shed 1.7 percent to $69.21. Crude oil futures lost $1.13, or 1.9 percent, to $57.50 per barrel.

Major support for the Nasdaq came from German software maker SAP AG after the company's chief executive said it expects glimmers of hope in the global economy in the second half of 2009. SAP's U.S.-listed stock shot up 2.4 percent to $40.19 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Shares of SAP rival Oracle Corp , up 1.7 percent at $18.63, ranked among the Nasdaq's top advancers.

(Editing by Jan Paschal)