Stocks Lower Early Monday

Stocks Lower Early Monday

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stocks around the world sank Monday on worries that the Trump White House may not be able to help businesses as much as once thought. Many of the trends that have been in place since Election Day went into sharp reverse: The dollar's value sank against other currencies, as did bank stocks, while prices jumped for Treasury bonds.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 17 points, or 0.7 percent, to 2,326, as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 157, or 0.8 percent, to 20,438. The Nasdaq composite dropped 53, or 0.9 percent, to 5,776.

Small-company stocks, which have outpaced the rest of the market since the election, fell even more. The Russell 2000 index sank 18 points, or 1.3 percent, to 1,336.

The stock market had been on a nearly nonstop rip higher since Election Day on the belief that President Donald Trump and a Republican-led Congress will cut income taxes, loosen regulations for companies and institute other business-friendly policies. Besides stronger economic growth, investors were also predicting higher inflation would be on the way.

But last week's failure by Republicans to fulfill a pledge they've been making for years, to repeal the Affordable Care Act, raises doubts that Washington can push through other promises. The House on Friday pulled its bill to revamp the country's health care system, when it was clear that it didn't have enough votes to pass.

DOLLAR DUMP: The dollar fell against most of its major rivals, including the Japanese yen, euro and British pound. The ICE U.S. Dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency's value against six others, has given up nearly all of its big gains since Election Day.

YIELDS DROP: The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.35 percent from 2.41 percent late Friday. That's close to its lowest level in a month. It was above 2.60 percent just a couple weeks ago. Two- and 30-year Treasury yields also sank.

BANKS SINK: Bank stocks have tracked the movements of Treasury yields recently, because higher interest rates would allow them to charge more for loans and reap bigger profits. Financial stocks in the S&P 500 dropped 2 percent, by far the largest loss among the 11 sectors that make up the index.

AN ANXIOUS MARKET: The VIX index measures the market's nervousness by looking at how much traders are paying to protect against upcoming drops in the S&P 500. By that measure, investors are feeling the most jittery since mid-November, shortly after Election Day. The VIX jumped 12 percent Monday.

GOLD GLITTERS: The price of gold jumped $11.20, or 0.9 percent, to $1,259.70 per ounce. If it holds there, it will end the day at its highest settlement price since the day after November's election.

Silver rose 38 cents to $18.13 per ounce. Copper, whose price tends to rise and fall with expectations for economic growth, fell 4 cents to $2.59 per pound.

MARKETS ABROAD: Stocks were weak around the world. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index dropped 1.4 percent, South Korea's Kospi index lost 0.6 percent and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 0.7 percent. In Europe, the German DAX lost 1.1 percent, the French CAC 40 fell 0.5 percent and the FTSE 100 in London dropped 1 percent.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 72 cents to $47.25 per barrel. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 72 cents to $50.20.