Stocks Opened Lower on Weak Chinese Data

U.S. stocks opened slightly lower Monday, after data in China increased worries over a slowing global economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately fell 31.36 points to 13,275.28. The S&P 500 index declined 2.04 point to 1,435.88. The Nasdaq Composite lost 8.36 points to 3,128.06.

China’s auto sales growth tumbled to 3.7 percent in August, further deepening an economic slowdown, data showed Monday. Customers bought 1.23 million cars, according to a government-authorized industry group, the China Association of Auto Manufacturers. The lower growth extended a steady decline from July’s 11 percent rate and June’s 15.8 percent.

The U.S. Treasury Department said it will sell most of its stake in insurer American International Group Inc, making the government a minority investor for the first time since it rescued the company in the depths of the financial crisis four years ago.

BP PLC , an integrated oil and gas company, said Monday that it has agreed to sell its interests in a number of oil and gas fields in the deepwater U.S. Gulf of Mexico to Plains Exploration and Production Company for a total of $5.55 billion.

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