Wall Street stocks finished lower on Monday following a downcast session marred by worries over Federal Reserve policy and the state of Sino-US relations.
The yield on the 10-year US Treasury note, a proxy for Fed interest rate policy, climbed higher after strong employment and services sector data released on Friday.
The figures raised worries that the US central bank may extend its run of aggressive measures to counter inflation.
Adding to the unease was tension between Beijing and Washington after the Pentagon shot down a Chinese balloon that had been flying over North America.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 0.1 percent to 33,891, the S&P 500 dropped 0.6 percent to 4,111, and the Nasdaq dropped 1.0 percent to 11,887.
The latest economic numbers were strong and raised the question of what the Fed is going to do next, said Hugh Johnson of Hugh Johnson Economics.
The worry is that "the Federal Reserve policy is not going to change into anything like a pause or a reduction anytime soon," Johnson said.
Analysts added that the market was also primed for profit-taking after a buoyant January that saw equities rise in spite of a worsening outlook for corporate profits.
Among individual companies, Tyson Foods slid 4.6 percent as the food giant reported lower quarterly profits that missed analyst expectations, saying that "operational inefficiencies" impacted profitability.
Dell Technologies fell 3.0 percent after announcing that it will lay off some five percent of its global workforce, or around 6,650 employees, marking the latest casualties of a job-slashing wave hitting the US tech sector. (AFP)