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Global markets jarred by North Korea fears

13 August 2017, 03:54 | Austin Hogan

Global markets jarred by North Korea fears

US stocks snap 3-day losing streak in roller coaster week

The Swiss franc CHF= and the yen notched big gains against the dollar on Wednesday after U.S. President Donald Trump warned North Korea that it would face "fire and fury" if it threatened the United States. The Dow rose slightly on Friday after shedding 205 points the day before, its worst slide in almost three months.

The Nasdaq gave up 13.31 (-0.21 percent) to close at 6,370.46, while the S&P 500 finished at 2,474.92, down 5.99 (-0.24 percent) from its open. Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 gained 0.5 percent to 5,773.70 while Manila, Malaysia and Jakarta also rose.

Trump warned North Korea again on Thursday not to strike Guam or US allies, saying his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on Pyongyang if it launched an attack may not have been tough enough.

Watch maker Fossil Group plunged 25 percent after reporting a weak quarter.

Health care equipment and services company Henry Schein declined amid a broader slide by health care stocks.

Gold prices have been volatile in the past few weeks. CNNMoney's Fear & Greed Index, which looks at the VIX and six other gauges of market sentiment, tipped toward Fear.

In Europe, the pan-continental STOXX 600 index lost 0.8 per cent, with falls deepening after reports a vehicle had rammed a group of soldiers in Paris, injuring six.

Small-company stocks fell more than the rest of the market Wednesday.

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Investors retreated from several of this year's top performers on Thursday, including shares of large US technology companies and biotechnology firms, while lifting shares of utilities companies - often thought of as bond proxies due to their relatively hefty dividends.

On Thursday, the CBOE Volatility Index, a barometer of expected near-term stock market volatility, closed at its highest since the USA presidential election.

The greenback also came under pressure after New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley cautioned it would "take some time" for U.S. inflation to reach the bank's two percent target. "I would expect the markets to react again pretty negatively to any more tough talk from either side, but for now, everybody seems to have settled down, and we'll see what happens".

In other energy futures trading, wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to $1.61 a gallon, while heating oil was little changed at $1.63 a gallon.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 36 cents to $48.23 per barrel on the on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The FTSE 100 is underperforming the DAX and CAC 40 because of several companies that are in the British index are paying dividends. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, declined 29 cents to $51.61 per barrel in London.

The Dow fell more than 200 points, a almost 1% drop, and its biggest dip in three months. Natural gas was also flat at $2.98 per 1,000 cubic feet. The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.2 percent to 3,273.71 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was off 0.2 percent at 27,803.55.

"The dollar-yen's downside is expected above 108 yen for now". The euro edged down to $1.1726 from $1.1751. The Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.



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