Stocks are ending lower on Wall Street as a year-end deadline nears with no deal in hand how to cut the U.S. government's budget deficit.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 99 points to end at 13,252 Wednesday, following two days of 100-point gains.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index lost 11 points to 1,436. The Nasdaq composite index also fell 11 points to end at 3,044.
The White House threatened to veto House Speaker John Boehner's backup plan for averting automatic tax increases and government spending cuts that are set to take effect Jan. 1 if no deal is reached on cutting the government's budget deficit.
Falling stocks narrowly outnumbered rising ones on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was below the recent average at 3.8 billion.