The Dow Jones industrial average fell 78 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 17,698 as of 11:45 a.m. Eastern time Wednesday. The Dow slumped 200 points on Tuesday.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index lost seven points, or 0.4 per cent, to 2,060. The Nasdaq composite declined 25 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 4,875.
European markets rose after an encouraging report that factory output in the region was at a 10-month high in March.
The price of oil rose $1.94 to $49.55 a barrel in New York.
Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.87 per cent.