Wall Street's main indexes fell on Thursday after data showed high levels of weekly jobless claims, while technology-related stocks resumed their slide with Apple Inc <AAPL.O> and Amazon.com Inc <AMZN.O> among the biggest drags on the Nasdaq.
All 11 major S&P 500 sector indexes fell in early trading, with energy stocks <.SPNY> leading declines as fears of tepid fuel demand hit oil prices.
Bank stocks <.SPXBK> slipped 1.1%, while the broader financials subindex <.SPSY> fell 1.0%, a day after the Federal Reserve pledged to keep interest rates low for a prolonged period to lift the world's biggest economy out of a pandemic-induced recession.
But with Fed Chair Jerome Powell indicating a long road to "maximum employment", stock markets were disappointed by the lack of firmer details around the central bank's stimulus plan.
"The bulls basically wanted more long-term bond buying (and) the fact that the Fed failed to provide that additional upside, investors are a bit more bearish today," said Mike Bailey, director of research at FBB Capital Partners in Bethesda, Maryland.
Adding to concerns around a stalling recovery, the Labor Department's report showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell last week, but remained perched at extremely high levels.
The Nasdaq <.IXIC>, which entered correction territory earlier this month, slipped another 1.2% with Facebook Inc <FB.O>, Apple, Amazon.com, Tesla Inc <TSLA.O>, Microsoft Corp <MSFT.O>, Alphabet Inc <GOOGL.O> and Netflix Inc <NFLX.O> together losing $150 billion in market capitalization in the first half hour of trading.
At 10:08 a.m. ET the Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> was down 172.82 points, or 0.62%, at 27,859.56, and the S&P 500 <.SPX> was down 28.53 points, or 0.84%, at 3,356.96.
General Electric Co <GE.N> rose 3.8% after Chief Executive Officer Larry Culp said on Wednesday the company's free cash flow would turn positive in the second half of this year.
Ford Motor Co <F.N> added 1.1% as it said it had begun production of the new generation F-150 pickup truck at its Michigan facility.
Carnival Corp <CCL.N> dropped 1.6% after its British cruiseline P&O Cruises extended a cancellation in sailings until early 2021. Other cruise operators such as Royal Caribbean Cruises <RCL.N> and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd <NCLH.N> shed 1%.
German biotech firm BioNTech SE <BNTX.O> rose 2.7% as it said it was buying a production site from Swiss drugs giant Novartis <NOVN.S> to boost output of its potential coronavirus vaccine by several million doses.
Declining issues outnumbered advancers 3.12-to-1 on the NYSE and 2.13-to-1 on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded no new 52-week high or low, while the Nasdaq recorded 15 new highs and 14 new lows.