Stocks fell on Thursday as upbeat economic data on jobs and housing failed to offset a selloff in the technology and materials sectors.

Technology stocks were weighed by networking/cloud computing companies after F5 Networks Inc gave a gloomy outlook, while energy and material stocks were pressured by a sharp decline in crude oil prices.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> dropped 74.13 points, or 0.63 percent, at 11,751.16. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was down 9.72 points, or 0.76 percent, at 1,272.20. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> slid 32.31 points, or 1.19 percent, at 2,693.05.

The decline came a day after Wall Street suffered its worst drop in nearly two months on disappointing results from banks. Investors were concerned the slump may grow worse.

I do consider it to be the start of a something more, said Marc Pado, U.S. market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald & Co in San Francisco. We're looking for a 5 percent to 7 percent pullback range, and I think we started it yesterday.

Crude oil futures fell 2.8 percent to $88.35 a barrel.

Alcoa Inc was the biggest decliner on the Dow, falling 2.5 percent to $15.66, while Exxon Mobil Corp gave up 1.4 percent to $77.14.

Among the networking/cloud stocks, F5 Networks tumbled nearly 23 percent at $107.22, while Juniper Networks Inc sank 6 percent to $34.67.

In the latest economic data, U.S. home resales jumped more than expected in December despite bad weather as the sector struggled to recover from a severe slump.

Also, U.S. initial jobless claims posted their biggest weekly decline in nearly a year.

(Reporting by Angela Moon and Ed Krudy; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)