Will oil market prices present economic challenges in the new year?
''A steep fall in oil prices and fresh concerns about China sent stocks lower Wednesday, extending the shaky start to the year.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 333 points, or 1.9%, to 16825. Stocks extended losses as oil prices careened lower, hitting shares of energy companies.
U.S. crude oil slumped 5.7% to $33.91 a barrel. Energy stocks in the S&P 500 tumbled 4.3%.
The S&P 500 lost 1.8%, and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.7%.
The CBOE Volatility Index gained 12% to 21.57, above its 10-year average of about 20 but remaining well below levels seen during the market tumult in August. The index is based on prices of S&P 500 options that investors tend to rush to when they're fearful of stock declines.''