Simmering North Korea tensions knock back Wall Street

13 Août, 2017, 11:10 | Author: Claudine Rigal
  • By Kimberly Chin

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 8 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,466 as of 2:45 p.m. It is now on track for its biggest weekly drop since the week before the November 8 US presidential election.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude added 39 cents to settle at $49.56 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Shares of Michael Kors (KORS.N) jumped 22.3 percent, helping to boost the consumer discretionary index.SPLRCD, after the luxury goods maker raised its full-year revenue forecast. Secretary of state Rex Tillerson said yesterday North Korea posed no "immediate threat" and that "Americans should sleep well at night, have no concerns about this particular rhetoric of the last few days".

If the North Korean regime "does anything" to the USA or a U.S. ally "things will happen to them like they never thought possible", Trump told reporters on Thursday, according to Bloomberg. The Nasdaq composite lost 18 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,352.

Global markets have lost almost US$1 trillion since United States president Donald Trump said on Tuesday that North Korea "will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen" and then dialed up his warning further on Thursday by saying he wasn't tough enough this week.

USA indexes opened lower for the third straight day on Thursday as North Korea's threat to land a missile just short of the US territory of Guam added fuel to simmering tensions with the United States.

Trump's threats have escalated since reports broke at the beginning of the week that North Korea had successfully produced a nuclear warhead that could fit inside its missiles.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 110.82 points to 21,937.88.

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

The utilities index, often seen as a bond proxy because of its companies' slow reliable growth and high dividends, was the only S&P sector that ended the day up, showing a 0.25 percent gain.

South Korea's KOSPI fell 1.7 percent to its lowest since May 24, but its losses for the week are a relatively modest 3.2 percent.

About 6.22 billion shares changed hands on USA stock exchanges, slightly above the 6.15 billion average for the last 20 sessions.

Update: The FTSE 100 has slumped further into the red amid persisting fears over North Korea tensions, with the sell-off accelerated by a slump in USA markets. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.6 percent lower.

The S&P hasn't moved more than 0.5 percent in one day since July and has fallen more than 1 percent only twice this year.

Selling was broad. Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE 6-to-1; on Nasdaq, a 3.60-to-1 ratio favored decliners.

US crude was down 0.9 percent at $48.16 per barrel, on track for a weekly loss of 2.9 percent.

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