Volatility is clearly reasserting itself in the stock market.
A darkening outlook for companies from banks to retailers to energy producers has pummeled Wall Street Wednesday. Government figures have show retail sales declined more than expected in December and concerns about troubled balance sheets are weighing on banks.
The Dow Jones industrial average is down 248, or 2.94 percent, at 8,200 after being down more than 300 points earlier in the session. Broader indexes are down more than 3 percent.
The Dow has now fallen for six straight sessions.