U.S. President Barack Obama has authorized "targeted airstrikes" in Iraq to protect American personnel and help Iraqi forces. Concerns are growing about a humanitarian crisis in Iraq where minority groups are facing possible slaughter by Sunni Muslim extremists.
"It's coming on top of geopolitical tensions that are already high," said Tom Beevers, CEO of StockViews, referring to U.S. versus Russia sanctions and the war in Israel and Gaza. "This is something that the market didn't really need."
"When you have this much uncertainty in the market which is due to geopolitical tensions, this not only makes the ordinary investor nervous but the professionals take a back step as well," said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at foreign exchange broker AvaTrade.
It's worth noting that the Dow has fallen by about 5% since mid-July.
3. Stock market movers -- Lululemon, Fox, Zynga, tech stocks: Lululemon Athletica(LULU) jumped 6% in premarket trading after founder Dennis Wilson agreed to sell half his stake, of $845 million in stock, to private equity firm Advent.
What the Fox? Shares in 21st Century Fox(FOX) were falling by 7% premarket. The company announced this week it was dropping its bid to buy Time Warner(TWX) and shares had jumped by about 6%.
Shares of game maker Zynga(ZNGA) plunged8% in premarket trading after the company reported a loss for its second quarter.
A variety of big tech companies including Google(GOOGL, Tech30) were also seeing their shares decline in premarket trading, in line with market sentiment.