Stocks Ended Sharply Lower amid Retreating Oil, Fed Worries

U.S. stocks finished sharply lower on Tuesday amid a slump in energy shares and uncertainty about the Federal Reserve’ s plans for monetary policy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 258.32 points, or 1.41%, to 18,066.75. The S&P 500 slid 32.02 points, or 1.48%, to 2,127.02. The Nasdaq Composite sank 56.63 points, or 1.09%, to 5,155.25.

Oil futures on Tuesday finished at their lowest level in a week. October West Texas Intermediate crude fell $1.39, or 3%, to settle at $44.90 a barrel. November Brent crude declined by $1.22, or 2.5%, to $47.10 a barrel.

The federal government ran a budget deficit of $107 billion in August, the Treasury Department said Tuesday, $43 billion more than in August 2015.

New data showing middle-class household incomes growing at the fastest rate since the recession seemed to confirm that a recovery that’s remained grudgingly slow and uneven is finally touching the lives of ordinary Americans.Median middle-class wages surged 5.2% between 2014 and 2015, the Census Department said Tuesday.

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