Dow sinks on weaker economic news; Airlines drop on fears Ebola will curtail travel plans

MarketsAssociated Press

U.S. stocks are slumping to a third straight loss as investors fret over poor economic news.

Airline stocks sank over worries that the first diagnosis of Ebola in the U.S. would cause people to curtail their travel plans. American Airlines and Delta each fell 3 percent.

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The Dow Jones industrial average lost 238 points, or 1.4 percent, to close at 16,804 Wednesday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 26 points, or 1.3 percent, to 1,946. The Nasdaq composite fell 71 points, or 1.6 percent, to 4,422.

Bonds and utility stocks rose as investors shifted money into less risky assets.

Utility stocks were the only sector in the S&P 500 index to rise. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.39 percent and prices for the notes rose.