US stocks sink on Portugal worries, retail earnings disappointment

MarketsAssociated Press

U.S. stocks are dropping in early trading amid financial jitters in Europe and disappointing retail earnings.

The Dow Jones industrial average slid 129 points, or 0.8 percent, to 16,856 moments after the stock market opened Thursday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 14 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,958. The Nasdaq slid 66 points, or 1.5 percent, to 4,352.

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U.S. markets were hit by losses in Europe, where worries over the health of one of Portugal's largest financial groups slammed stocks and pushed investors into safer bonds.

Family Dollar Stores reported quarterly profit early Thursday that fell by 33 percent and missed analysts' expectations. The stock fell 2.3 percent in early trading.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.51 percent from 2.55 percent late Wednesday.