US stocks retreat as Greece talks stall

NEW YORK (AFP) - US stocks followed European equity markets lower on Wednesday, dropping sharply on signs of fresh problems in talks between Greece and its international creditors aimed at preventing a Greek debt default.

At the closing bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 17,969.24, down 174.83 points (0.96 per cent).

The broad-based S&P 500 fell 15.34 (0.72 per cent) to 2,108.86, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 24.14 (0.53 per cent) to 4,524.60.

The tone of talks between Greece and its international creditors sharpened with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras lashing out at their counterproposal to the government's reform plan.

Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital, said Greece was weighing on stocks, but added that some investors were selling off before the second quarter ends next Tuesday.