US stocks fell Thursday in the second day of losses after President Barack Obama's re-election victory, though the red ink was light after Wednesday's huge 2.4 percent rout.
At 12:00 pm (1700 GMT) the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 17.37 points (0.13 percent) to 12,915.36.
The broad-based S&P 500 fell 2.66 (0.19 percent) to 1,391.87, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite lost 7.85 (0.27 percent) to 2,929.44
The Dow marked its biggest one-day loss in a year on Wednesday after Obama defeated Republican challenger Mitt Romney at the polls, losing 313 points, 2.36 percent; the S&P lost nearly 34 points and the Nasdaq nearly 75 points.
Traders said Wall Street, which had largely favored Romney, was reacting more to the specter of a new grueling battle between Democrats and Republicans over the deficit and the looming "fiscal cliff" spending cuts and tax hikes.
"Markets did an about-face yesterday, as heavy selling crushed major indices by more than two percent," said Tony Venosa of Schaeffer's Investment Research.
"The looming 'fiscal cliff' and eurozone economic issues have been brought to the forefront."
After an initial rebound into the black, stocks fell back again Thursday, but losses were lighter with the Dow's 30 blue chips closely split between gainers and losers.
Major banks held onto gains, after being crushed in Wednesday's sell-off: JPMorgan Chase added 1.0 percent and Bank of America gained 2.9 percent.
Chip maker Qualcomm rose 6.8 percent after delivering a fairly buoyant outlook for sales.
Monster Beverage, feeling the brunt of a general backlash over high-caffeine energy drinks, sank 1.7 percent.
Apple continued to slip, losing 1.5 percent after falling 3.8 percent Wednesday. Verizon fell 1.1 percent.
Bond prices fell. The 10-year US Treasury yield gained to 1.67 percent from 1.63 percent late Wednesday, and the 30-year rose to 2.83 percent from 2.82 percent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.