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Stocks Move Off Lows but Remain in Red in Choppy Trading


NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks moved off lows by mid-afternoon Wednesday, though remained modestly lower after U.S. and Chinese manufacturing disappointed.

The S&P 500 was down 0.34%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.54%, and the Nasdaq slid 0.18%. The Volatility Index, commonly referred to as the 'fear index,' was down 2.1% to 21.97.

U.S. manufacturing in September grew at its slowest pace since October 2013. The flash Markit manufacturing index recorded an unchanged reading of 53 as manufacturers dealt with a stronger dollar and weaker global demand.

Volkswagen (VLKAY) CEO Martin Winterkorn resigned on Wednesday in the wake of a massive emissions scandal. The shares were higher after two days of steep losses. The automaker had admitted that more than 11 million diesel vehicles had software that gamed emissions tests. Shares have now fallen 55% from a March peak.

Asian markets ended deep in the red on Wednesday after fresh data on China's factory sector underscored fears of a slowdown. Factory activity in China dropped to its lowest level since March 2009 -- a reading of 47 in September fell below estimates of...