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Stock market sags at close as investors weigh weaker growth; January is worst month in a year

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NEW YORK — The stock market is sagging at the close as investors weigh a slowdown in the U.S. economy and corporate earnings.

January was a rough month for markets. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 3 percent, its worse monthly performance in a year.

On Friday, the Dow Jones industrial average slumped 252 points, or 1.5 percent, to close at 17,164. The S&P 500 dipped 26 points, or 1.3 percent, to 1,994. The Nasdaq eased 48 points, or 1 percent, to 4,635.

The economy grew at a slower pace than expected in the last quarter of 2014, the government said Friday. Weaker government and business spending held growth back.

The news sent prices for U.S. government bonds up, pushing the yield on the 10-year Treasury note to 1.66 percent.

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