NEW YORK — U.S. stocks fell across industries on Wednesday as investors worried over stock valuations, economic growth and rising interest rates.

Markets started the day higher, propelled by a jump in energy stocks, but then quickly gave up the gains. A comment from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen suggesting that stocks are generally overvalued added to the selling pressure.

Uncertainty over how quickly interest rates will climb also weighed on markets as yields on bonds continued to rise. Some market experts think the Fed will have to increase its short-term rate relatively soon to fight inflation. The yield on 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose to 2.23 percent, its highest level in two months.

“There are creeping worries that inflation, which was seen as nonexistent, will soon be part of landscape,” said Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist for Janney Montgomery Scott. “There is data suggesting the Federal Reserve will not be in a hurry to raise rates, but people are worried.”

Eight of the 10 industry sectors of the Standard and Poor’s 500 index ended the day lower, led by a 1.2 percent slump in telecommunications companies.

The S&P 500 fell 9.31 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,080.15. The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 86.22 points, or 0.5 percent, to 17,841.98. The Nasdaq composite declined 19.68 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,919.64.