NEW YORK, March 10 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks recovered earlier losses but still closed in negative territory Monday, as broader selling in global stock market dampened sentiment on Wall Street.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 34.04 points, or 0.21 percent, to 16,418.68. The S&P 500 lost 0.87 point, or 0.05 percent, to 1,877.17. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 1.77 points, or 0.04 percent, to 4,334.45.
Stocks in Asia and Europe posted a broad dip Monday after China reported a large trade deficit in February mainly due to distortion by the Chinese New Year holidays, marking the first deficit since April 2013.
China's trade deficit stood at 22.98 billion U.S. dollars in February, with exports falling 18.1 percent and imports up 10.1 percent, China's General Administration of Customs said on Saturday. The figures missed economists' expectations.
In a response to the unexpectedly weak trade data, Wall Street followed the suit to edge down.
With light economic calendar for the United States on Monday, investors tried to digest speeches from a pair of Federal Reserve officials who did not give a surprise to investors.
Charles Plosser, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, said earlier in the day in Paris that the Fed's pace of tapering may be too slow.
"Reducing the pace of asset purchases in measured steps is moving in the right direction, but the pace may leave us well behind the curve if the economy continues to play out according to the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) forecasts," Plosser said.
Echoing Plosser, Chicago Fed President Charles Evans said later in the day that the U.S. central bank would continue to reduce its monthly bond buying program by 10 billion dollars, adding that the Fed may adjust its forward guidance on interest rates.
The U.S. stock market recouped most of earlier losses to end near session highs, as investors were inclined to jump in and buy a dip, believing the U.S. economic recovery is still on track.
All the three major indices wrapped up higher last week, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq logging a five-week winning streak and the S& P 500 repeatedly refreshing its record highs.
The CBOE Volatility Index, widely considered as a fear gauge of the market, edged up 0.64 percent to end at 14.20.
In other markets, the U.S. dollar continued rising against most major currencies on Monday, still supported by the favorable U.S. job data in February.
In late New York trading, the euro dipped to 1.3869 dollars from 1.3871 dollars in the previous session. The dollar bought 103. 20 Japanese yen, lower than 103.30 yen of the previous session.
Oil prices fell as the unexpected decline in Chinese exports ignited concerns over demand of the world's top energy consuming nation.
Meanwhile, traders continued to keep a close watch on the development of Ukraine crisis.
Light, sweet crude for April delivery moved down 1.46 dollars to settle at 101.12 U.S. dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for April delivery lost 92 cents to close at 108.08 dollars a barrel.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose on the weaker-than-expected Chinese trade data.
The most active gold contract for April delivery rose 3.3 dollars, or 0.25 percent, to settle at 1,341.5 dollars per ounce.