ALSO READDow hits 25,000 milestone on strong US hiring data Dow Jones opens at record high after Caterpillar's earnings smash estimates Wall Street drifts lower on last trading day of 2017 Wall St sell-off: US stocks fall most in 6 yrs, Dow slips 1600 points Dow hits record at 26,437 as Intel shares hit dotcom-era highs
US stocks markets took another beating in early Thursday trade as a rise in bond yields and higher inflation continued to unnerve investors following a historic drop on Monday.
The 10-year US Treasury yield crept back to a high of 2.884 per cent, near Monday's four-year peak of 2.885 per cent.
The market's main gauge of volatility, the CBOE Volatility Index, fell to 27.06 on Thursday, still more than twice the level it held over the past few months. The index hit its highest level since August 2015 on Tuesday.
"Volatility has eased but by no means is it low. It is still far above the long-term average and unease about higher interest rates remain," said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading and derivatives for Charles Schwab.
"The outlook for the rest of the year remains positive and fundamentals remain strong.
If the VIX falls below 20, then we should see some buying," Frederick said.
Investors are weighing whether the sharp swings in stocks this week are the start of a deeper correction or just a temporary bump in the nine-year bull market, spurred by concerns over rising interest rates and bond yields.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 82.50 points, or 1.17 percent, at 6,969.49.
However, Minneapolis Fed chief Neel Kashkari said he does not think the Fed should raise interest rates unless wages and inflation start to take off, and that the US economy is a "long way" from that.
Economic data showed weekly jobless claims fell to 221,000, below the 232,000 rise expected by economists, dropping to its lowest level in nearly 45 years as the labor market tightened further.
Among stocks, Twitter jumped 20 percent after it reported its first quarterly net profit and topped Wall Street targets as video ad sales rose.
Tesla was down 3.2 percent after the electric automaker said spending could rise in 2018.
Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 2,072 to 681. On the Nasdaq, 1,950 issues fell and 780 advanced.
The S&P 500 index showed no new 52-week highs and 6 new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 22 new highs and 38 new lows.