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Stocks drop following Federal Reserve minutes

Warren Meyers, a trader for DME Securites, monitors trading activity from his mobile workstation at the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013. Stock market indexes flipped between small gains and losses early after the U.S. government reported that housing construction slowed down during the first month of the year. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stocks are closing lower on Wall Street following news that several top Federal Reserve officials are doubtful about continuing the central bank's economic stimulus.

The S&P 500 index had its biggest loss of the year.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 108 points to close at 13,927 points Wednesday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 lost nearly 19 points, or 1.2 percent, to 1,511.

The Nasdaq composite fell 49 points to 3,164. Apple fell 2 percent on reports of a hiring freeze at its main supplier in China, Foxconn.

Caterpillar fell after reporting weaker sales in North America and Asia, dragging the Dow lower.

Three stocks fell for every one that rose on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was 4.1 billion shares, slightly heavier than usual.