Wall Street suffered its first heavy loss for the year overnight, with the three major US indices sinking at least one percent each.
The Dow endured its worst one day drop since late September last year, amid concerns its rally has been overdone in light of the recent weak economic data out of China and the US.
Not helping matters, Fed President Dennis Lockhart, voiced his support for additional stimulus tapering in a speech last night.
Investors were also reluctant to push stocks higher ahead of a slew of quarterly earnings results from US companies.
The Dow slumped 179 points (-1.1%) to 16258, the S&P500 shed 23 points (-1.3%) to 1819 and the Nasdaq let go of 62 points (-1.5%) to 4113.
It was a different story in Europe, where the UK FTSE rose 0.3%, the German DAX put on 0.4% and the French CAC added 0.3%.
In commodity markets, nickel was again the big mover, soaring another 2.5% percent following Indonesia’s decision to ban mineral exports.
Elsewhere, oil lost additional ground after Iran and world powers began implementing a deal that will expand the nation’s crude exports in exchange for curbing its nuclear program.
In the currency space, the greenback faced a second day of declines as traders continue to react to the weak December US jobs numbers.
There is no major economic data due for release today.