The blue chip Dow Jones Industrial Average suffered its steepest decline since June 2016 on Friday, amid wider losses in US markets.

The fall came after a string of disappointing earnings reports from giants such as Apple.

Strong wage growth in the latest payrolls data also spooked investors raising the possibility of higher interest rates than expected.

The Dow fell more than 665 points or 2.5% to 25,520.96.

The S&P 500 tumbled 59.8 points, falling 2.12% to 2,762.13, while the Nasdaq closed 144.91 points lower at 7,240.9, down 1.96%.

The losses touched every sector, with the steepest declines in energy and technology stocks.

Chevron and Exxon were the two biggest losers on the Dow, falling more than 5%. Apple was number four, retreating 4.3%.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note hit a four-year high on Friday, extending increases that have come as central banks globally ease stimulus programmes and raise rates.

The gains in bond yields have touched off fears in the stock market that higher borrowing costs could hurt consumers, while making stocks a less attractive investment.

There are also geopolitical questions that could be rattling markets, including trade tensions with major US partners that include China.

“There are still a number of question marks on the side of fiscal policy,” said Lindsey Piezga, chief economist at Stifel Fixed Income.

Analysts cautioned against reading too much into the market declines, which follow a massive rally in 2017 that was fuelled by a strengthening global economy and high expectations for US corporate tax cuts.

The three major stocks indexes also closed January up more than 5%.

The Dow, which tracks about 30 major companies, in particular is not a good gauge, said Brian Barnier, head of analytics at Valuebridge Advisers.

“It’s very important to separate trading activity from real investing activity,” he said.

Assuming they have well-designed portfolios, “mom and pops sitting at home… should not be concerned, given the massive run up in the market,” he added.

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