NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The S&P 500 accelerated losses by mid-morning Tuesday as energy shares dragged down Wall Street. Sector heavyweights Exxon Mobil (XOM) and Chevron (CVX) fell 1.2% and 0.96%, respectively, after Saudi Arabia cut sales prices to the United States a day earlier.
Prices for West Texas Intermediate slumped 2.6% to $76.73 a barrel and Brent crude slid 2.57% to $82.60 a barrel after Saudi imports for December delivery were slashed 45 cents from a month earlier. The Energy Select Sector SPDR exchange-traded fund (XLE) tumbled 2.5%.
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Watch the video below for a closer look at how U.S. markets are starting the trading day Tuesday:
"We've been seeing some technical stop loss selling because the price has reached new lows," Jefferies analyst Christopher Bellew told CNBC.
The trade deficit for September widened to $43 billion compared to the expected $40.7 billion, while exports hit a five-month low. A month earlier, the trade deficit totaled a revised $40 billion.
The S&P 500 slid 0.51%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.19% and the Nasdaq slipped 0.32%.
European shares were falling after the European Commission tempered its expectations for eurozone growth through 2016 on continued deflation concerns and unemployment woes. The body cut its forecast for growth next year to 1.1% from 1.7% with significantly lowered estimates for the region's two largest economies, Germany and France.