The US markets closed lower on Monday, with the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq logging their worst days since February 8, as concerns about Facebook Inc.'s management of user data sparked a selloff in technology shares. Facebook's worst drop in nearly four years follows an outcry over its management of third-party access to users' information, and weighed on other social-media stocks and the technology sector, which is the best-performing industry this year. The Federal Reserve has the attention of markets worldwide with an interest-rate hike expected on Wednesday following a two-day meeting of the central bank's policy group, the Federal Open Market Committee. Higher interest rates can make riskier assets such as stocks less attractive. Investors also have been worrying this month about a potential global trade war. Concerns about trade friction come as the Trump administration takes a hawkish stance on trade with China and moves ahead with tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum.
Meanwhile, the US Congress, facing a Friday midnight deadline, toiled on Monday to finish writing a $1.2 trillion bill to fund the federal government through September 30, as several thorny issues lingered, including funding President Donald Trump's border wall. A range of other hot-button initiatives was also slowing the unveiling of legislation that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives had aimed to make public late on Monday.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 335.6 points or 1.35 percent to 24,610.91, the Nasdaq dropped 137.744 points or 1.84 percent to 7,344.24, while the S&P 500 was down by 39.09 points or 1.42 percent to 2,712.92.