U.S. stocks fell in early Wednesday trading after a government report showed an unexpected decline in orders for durable goods -- an indication that economic growth may be slowing.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 36 points to hit 10,116. The S & P 500 was down three points at 1149, while the NASDAQ moved down seven points to 1921.
European share prices are down sharply in midday trading. London's Financial Times index, the CAC-40 in Paris, and the DAX index in Frankfurt were all off by one percent or more.
Earlier in Asia, Tokyo's Nikkei index lost 30 points to finish at 11,005. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index lost 20 points to end at 13,840.
The price of gold was down more than a dollar, trading at 435 dollars and 60 cents an ounce.
The dollar in New York is down against the yen but gained in value compared to the euro.