US stocks fall in midday trading on bleak economic news

More signs of weakness in China's economy are sending stocks and the price of oil sharply lower.

The swoon Tuesday comes a day after U.S. stocks closed out their worst month in more than three years.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 335 points, or 2 percent, to 16,193 as of noon Eastern time.

The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 37 points, or 1.9 percent, to 1,935. The Nasdaq slid 73 points, or 1.5 percent, to 4,695.

Benchmark indexes were down 2.4 percent in Germany and 3 percent in Britain. Japan's Nikkei fell 4 percent.

An official index of Chinese manufacturing fell to a three-year low last month.

The signs of weakness in China, a major importer of oil, sent the price of crude skidding 7 percent.

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