NEW YORK (CNNMONEY)—Concerns over a European country sent stocks on Wall Street tumbling, with some of the biggest players suffering their largest one-day decline of the year.
The Dow Jones industrial average opened higher Monday morning but ended the day down 216 points.
The S&P 500 fell 1.8 percent and the Nasdaq dropped 1.4 percent by the end of the day.
Analysts say it was the worst day since Nov. 7 for both the Dow and S&P 500.
They say it was difficult to pinpoint why traders decided to sell but political uncertainty in Italy was a main trigger.
For the first time in Italy’s history, a tight election between Pier Luigi Bersani and Silvio Berlusconi may cause a hung parliament in the country.
The uncertainty over a new leader is causing concern for many investors, worried that a “gridlock” could undermine the progress Italy has made in fixing its troubled economy.
There is also a bit of uncertainty in the United States as sequestration looms if Congress doesn’t come to an agreement by Friday