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NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are edging lower in early trading on Wall Street, weighed down by a slide in energy stocks as crude oil and natural gas prices fell. The downward trend echoed a decline in the major stock markets in Europe.
After an hour of trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down more than 50 points, the S&P 500 index was off about eight points and the Nasdaq composite was down more than 20.
The volatility in energy markets continued, with the benchmark U.S. crude contract losing some of its overnight gain. It was down $1.28, or 3.4 percent, to $36.59 a barrel in New York. It's down about 39 percent this year.
Several energy companies moved lower as investors reacted to the latest downturn in oil and natural gas prices.