U.S. stocks closed lower on Wednesday, led by a decline in energy companies following the latest drop in crude oil and natural gas prices. The market decline came on lighter-than-usual trading ahead of the New Year's Day holiday.

U.S. stocks closed lower on Wednesday, led by a decline in energy companies following the latest drop in crude oil and natural gas prices. The market decline came on lighter-than-usual trading ahead of the New Year's Day holiday.

On Wednesday:

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 117.11 points, or 0.7 percent, to 17,603.87.

The S&P 500 index lost 15 points, or 0.7 percent, to 2,063.36.

The Nasdaq composite shed 42.09 points, or 0.8 percent, to 5,065.85.

For the week:

The Dow is up 51.70 points, or 0.3 percent.

The S&P 500 index is up 2.37 points, 0.1 percent.

The Nasdaq is up 17.35 points, or 0.3 percent.

For the year:

The Dow is down 219.20 points, or 1.2 percent.

The S&P is up 4.46 points, or 0.2 percent.

The Nasdaq is up 329.79 points, or 7 percent.