Major Wall Street indexes tumbled Thursday as traders contended with a corrosive cocktail of slowing growth in China, rising U.S. interest rates and concerns that global tensions with Saudi Arabia might drive up oil prices.

The blue-chip Dow Jones industrial average slid 1.3 percent to 25,379, taking its decline so far this month to 2.8 percent. The broader S&P 500 dropped 1.4 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 2.1 percent.

"There were a lot of things happening," but the critical driver appeared to be an economic slowdown in China, which has resisted President Trump's tariff-backed demands for a better trade deal with the U.S., said Tony Roth, chief investment officer at Wilmington Trust, which manages $83.5 billion.

"China seems to be very intent on not making any concessions from a trading perspective," Roth told the Washington Examiner, "and the reality of that trading difficulty is really starting to hit home."

Trump has imposed tariffs on $250 billion of imports from the world's second-largest economy and threatened duties on another $267 billion as he seeks to halt the Beijing's appropriation of U.S. intellectual property and eliminate a trade imbalance.

American business leaders, who share the president's concern about intellectual property, have objected to his tactics for dealing with it. They warn that the tariffs may pinch global supply chains for U.S. retailers and manufacturers, ultimately eroding the benefits of a boom spurred by last year's GOP-led tax cuts. Trump has also placed levies on steel, aluminum, and washing machines and threatened to impose them on cars and car parts.

A speech at the Detroit Economic Club by Larry Kudlow, one of Trump's top economic advisers, may have exacerbated investors' worries, Roth added.

"China hasn't responded positively to any of our asks," Kudlow said in remarks carried by financial news channel CNBC, and Trump has no plans to abandon the fight.

"We have the economic advantage right now" Kudlow added. "We are in a position to back up our actions. I'm not sure they can. We will see."

Separately, an ongoing investigation into the disappearance of Saudi Arabian dissident Jamal Khashoggi, who had moved to the U.S. and was last seen entering the Saudi embassy in Istanbul, increased concerns that disputes between the Kingdom and the Western world might impede the world's oil supply.

Khashoggi was reportedly tortured and killed inside the embassy, though the U.S. hasn't confirmed that. While the Saudi government and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman have denied responsibility, U.S. officials outside the White House have leveled harsh criticism, and even Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this week that the Kingdom had only a "handful of days" to explain what happened.

President Trump, however, has cautioned against a rush to judgment. Given Saudi Arabia's control of 18 percent of the world's oil reserves and its status as the largest petroleum exporter, the tensions over Khashoggi's disappearance are unlikely to move beyond harsh rhetoric, Roth said.

Still, oil prices spiked briefly after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin pulled out of an investor conference in the country, signaling frostier relations with the U.S, before falling 1.6 percent to end the day at $69.75 a barrel.

Ultimately, the Federal Reserve's increasingly hawkish monetary policy, underlined in minutes of the entral bank's most recent monetary policy committee meeting, may prove more worrisome to financial markets. The Fed has already raised rates three times this year, to a range of 2 percent to 2.25 percent, and indicated it would continue to increase them in minutes from a recent meeting released on Wednesday.

"The markets are recalibrating how aggressively the Fed is going to raise rates," Jason Draho, head of Americas asset allocation at UBS Global Wealth Management's chief investment office, told the Washington Examiner.

Despite the correction over the past few weeks, however, "the U.S. economy is still very strong," Draho added. "We're going through a period of time when the market has to digest the impact of higher rates and digest the impact of rising trade tensions and as that happens, it will lead to market volatility, but the overall story for the U.S. is still very positive."