The U.S. stock market opened sharply lower on Tuesday and the Dow Jones Industrial Averages began the day with a triple-digit loss, as global equity investors eschewed risky stocks in favor of havens like Treasurys and gold. The last time the blue-chip index dropped more than 100 points at the open was in mid-October, when the market bottomed after a near 10% correction. Fresh speculation that the Federal Reserve may be close to pulling back its pledge to keep rates low may have contributed to selling pressure. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 154 points, or 0.9%, to 17,698. The S&P 500 opened 18 points, or 0.9%, lower at 2,041. The Nasdaq Composite began the day with a loss of 53 points, or 1.1%, at 4,688.
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