NEW YORK -- Stocks plunged Monday as anxiety overtook investors on the first trading day since Standard & Poor's downgraded American debt.
The Dow Jones industrials fell 634.76 points. It was the sixth worst point decline for the Dow in the last 112 years and the worst one-day drop since December 2008. Every stock in the Standard & Poor's 500 index declined Monday.
Investors worried about the slowing U.S. economy, escalating debt problems threatening Europe and the prospect that fear in the markets would reinforce itself, as it did during the financial crisis in the fall of 2008.