Stocks lower on worries over China slowdown

NEW YORK (AP) ? Stocks are lower on more signs that China’s economy is weakening and Europe is slowing.

Oil prices dropped 2 percent to their lowest level in a week after the reports of a possible global slowdown. That hurt oil stocks: Alpha Natural Resources, Consol Energy and Cliffs Natural Resources were all down 4 percent.

The disconcerting news from overseas Thursday overshadowed reports showing the U.S. economy is gaining momentum.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 80 points to 13,045 shortly before noon eastern. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 11 points to 1,391, while the Nasdaq composite fell 15 points to 3,059.

China’s manufacturing sector is contracting, according to a report. Another survey in Europe also showed signs of a slowdown there in services and manufacturing.