The Dow Jones industrial average lost 26 points to close at 13,584 on Monday.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell five points to 1,456 and the Nasdaq gave up 24 points to end the day at 3,112.
Companies in the S&P 500 are expected to post an overall decline in profits for the first time in almost three years. Meanwhile the World Bank warned that a more pronounced slowdown is possible in China.
Falling stocks outnumbered rising ones three to two on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was very light at 2.3 billion shares.
Bond trading was closed for the Columbus Day holiday.