U.S. Markets closed

US stock market recovers most of an early loss

Joseph Lawler, right, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, May 23, 2013. Stocks fell in early trading, extending a sell-off that began Wednesday afternoon, after Chinese manufacturing unexpectedly contracted and on concern that the Federal Reserve may ease back on its stimulus program. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stock prices are slightly lower at midday on Wall Street after manufacturing contracted unexpectedly in China this month.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 10 points at 15,297 as of noon Eastern Daylight Time, a loss of 0.1 percent. It had been down 127 points in the early going following steep losses in European and Japanese markets.

Traders attributed the early swoon on Wall Street and in overseas markets to the slowdown in China's economic engine and worries among investors that the Federal Reserve may ease back on its economic stimulus program.

The Dow is still up 16.7 percent this year.

The Standard & Poor's 500 fell five points to 1,650, or 0.3 percent. The Nasdaq composite fell five points to 3,457, or 0.2 percent.