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US STOCKS fell, led by bank shares, after First Union Corp warned that its earnings would not meet analysts' expectations.

"Anytime you have an industry leader reporting a negative surprise, that has a ripple effect for the industry,'' said one analyst.

The Dow Jones dropped 124.35 points, or 1.3 per cent, to 9,200.23. The tech-laden Nasdaq index fell 25.93 points to 2,407.22, led by Microsoft and Intel, after hovering close to flat for most of the day. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 9.12 to 1,243.19.

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