Dow falls 200 points as energy, mining stocks drop

Stocks, commodity prices fall sharply as traders worry about a slowdown in China's growth

Associated Press
Falling commodities give Dow worst day of the year

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In this Friday, April 12, 2013, photo Trader Lewis Vande Pallen, right, works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. World stock markets mostly sank Monday April 15, 2013 as China's slower-than-expected economic growth and disappointing U.S. retail sales weighed on investor sentiment. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK (AP) -- Signs of slowing growth in China led to a steep fall in commodities prices and a sell-off in the stock market.

Energy and mining stocks had the sharpest declines.

The Dow Jones industrial average dropped more than 200 points, its worst one-day loss since February.

Gold plunged below $1,400 an ounce for the first time in two years as a sell-off in metals continued from last week. Oil prices hit their lowest level since mid-December.

The Dow was down 215 points at 14,648, a drop of 1.4 percent.

Other indexes fell even more. The Standard & Poor's 500 slumped 30 points, 1.9 percent, to 1,559. The Nasdaq fell 72 points, or 2.2 percent, to 3,222.

Basic materials and energy stocks fell the most in the S&P, led by Cliffs Natural.

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