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Stocks Slide on Concerns over China Economy and Ukraine Crisis

Stocks declined on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 retreating from its record high, as news from China hit commodity prices, concern about Ukraine lingered and investors awaited signals on the direction of the economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the day unofficially 67 points lower at 16,351,25. The S&P 500 dropped 9 points to 1,867.63 and the Nasdaq shed 27 points.

On Monday, stocks fell as a deceleration in China's exports had investors concerned about the global economy.

"The news out of China is weighing on some of the commodity prices, steel, things like that. There are concerns about how it might impact U.S. corporations," said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Banyan Partners.

And, a default on a bond payment by China's Chaori Solar rattled the copper market, leading to three days of heavy selling.

Shares of General Motors dropped on news that a House committee would probe the response of the auto manufacturer and regulators to complaints about ignition-switch problems that led to at least 13 deaths. American Eagle Outfitters fell more than 7 percent after the teen-apparel retailer projected current-quarter earnings below Wall Street estimates, saying the harsh winter had cut into demand.

The dollar climbed against other currencies; the 10-year Treasury yield fell 1 basis point to 2.766 percent.

Markets were also rattled by Ukraine's interior minister reportedly saying the country could mobilize 20,000 troops to protect its borders. Russia has nearly 19,000 troops in Crimea, according to Ukraine officials.