Another batch of mediocre earnings also gave investors pause.
Looking past Boeing's Dreamliner issues
The two Dow components AT&T(T) and Procter & Gamble(PG) got bludgeoned, closing down 5% and 6%. AT&T's sales came up short, while Procter & Gamble cut its guidance.
Apple(AAPL) added to the downward pressure. It beat expectations and announced it would raise its quarterly dividend and boost its stock buyback program. But the company still struggled with lower profits on the iPhone and iMac.
There were a few bright spots among the corporate earnings. Boeing(BA) was the biggest gainer on the Dow, after it reported an increase in profits, even as revenue was dinged by its grounded Dreamliners.
Shares of Yum Brands(YUM) jumped more than 7% after the fast-food restaurant operator reported earnings that topped Wall Street's low expectations.
First Solar(FSLR) was the biggest gainer on the S&P 500. Shares hit a new 52-week high, pulling other solar stocks higher. Shares of SolarCity(SCTY), SunPower(SPWR) and Canadian Solar(CSIQ) all logged solid gains.