The Dow saw its first back-to-back triple-digit drop since June 19-20, when it tumbled nearly 560 points. That swoon was sparked by the Federal Reserve, which said after its June meeting that it would start dialing down its market-friendly bond-buying program later this year if the economy and jobs market continue to improve.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index ended 1.45% lower -- at 1661, shrinking back further from the much-watched 1700 threshhold -- while the Nasdaq declined 1.7%.
Before the opening bell, Wal-Mart reported earnings below expectations, and reported same-store sales slipped 0.3%, below the 1% gain analysts expected. The retailer also lowered its earnings and sales projections for the rest of 2013. Wal-Mart shares ended down 2.6%.