U.S. stocks are sliding in midday trading as investors sort through mixed headlines out of Europe that indicate the region's debt crisis is far from over.
Greece's two main political parties reached a deal over the weekend to share power in a new government. That relieved investors by reducing the chances of an imminent default by Greece, which would rattle financial markets and cause losses for major European banks.
Italy's borrowing rates spiked Monday, however. Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has rejected suggestions that he resign to make way for more cost-cutting.
The Dow gave up early gains and fell 48 points, or 0.4 percent, to 11,934 as of 11:45 a.m. (1645 GMT). The S&P 500 lost 7, or 0.6 percent, to 1,245. The Nasdaq dropped 26, or 1 percent, to 2,659.