Tuesday saw stocks hit with a trifecta of gloom as violence erupted on the Korean peninsula, worries about Europe's debt crisis expanded and the Federal Reserve issued a dour economic outlook.
The retreat was sparked by an exchange of artillery fire along the disputed sea border between North and South Korea Tuesday morning. The skirmish, which killed two South Korean soldiers and wounded several civilians, was one of the worst since the Korean War of the 1950s ended in armistice.
Jeff Kleintop, chief market strategist at LPL Financial in Boston, said the news reminded traders how easily markets can be disturbed by geopolitics.
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