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Gold steady near 2-mth highs as N. Korea tensions continue

12 Agosto 2017, 06:31 | Azura Castelo

Asian stocks fall amid escalating US, North Korea tension

People walk past an electronic board showing stock prices outside a brokerage at a business district in Tokyo

But U.S. stocks regained some lost ground, despite Trump's comments Friday that U.S. weapons are "locked and loaded", ready to respond if North Korea acts "unwisely".

Oil prices fell for a third day on doubts over OPEC's ability to limit supply.

The dollar index .DXY , which measures the USA currency against a basket of other major currencies, fell 0.14 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 14 points, a gain of 0.07 percent, the Nasdaq composite rose almost 40 points or 0.64 percent and the S&P 500 gained 3 points or 0.13 percent. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 19 points, or 1.4 percent, to 1,377.

President Donald 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. Japan and South Korea vowed a strong reaction if the North were to go through with the plan.

In contrast to the USA market, global equities remained weak.

Unease over the North Korean situation pushed the VIX, a measure of how much volatility investors expect in stocks, up 44.4 percent.

Technology companies, which have been the biggest gainers this year as the market hit a succession of record highs, led the broad slide.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 lost 1.11 percent. On the Nasdaq, 2,082 issues fell and 669 advanced. That's the biggest increase since May.

In other corporate news, shares of Snapchat parent Snap fell 13% after it reported earnings late Thursday that missed analyst forecasts. Kohl's also declined, sliding $2.66, or 6.3 percent, to $39.28. Two weeks ago it saw its biggest weakly fall against the euro since the start of 2015.

BONDS: Bond prices rose. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, dipped by 2.3 basis points to 2.189 percent.

Also rising was oil and gas services company Amec Foster Wheeler as pre-tax swung to a profit of £77m from a loss of £446m a year earlier, though.

The CBOE Volatility Index, the most widely followed barometer of expected near-term USA stock market volatility, hit its highest mark since November 8, when Trump was elected president. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, gained 40 cents to $52.54 in London.

At 12:28 p.m. ET (1628 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 52.87 points, or 0.24 percent, at 22,032.47, the S&P 500 was down 2.8 points, or 0.11 percent, at 2,472.12. Silver gained 20 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $17.07 an ounce.

CURRENCIES: The dollar slipped to 109.78 yen from 110.06 late Wednesday in Asia.

The euro fell a quarter-of-a-percent against the dollar to trade at $1.1728 as European markets opened. Netflix was down 1.8 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index plunged by 2 percent, while South Korea's Kospi Index slumped by 1.7 percent.

Excluding food and energy prices, core consumer prices still crept up by 0.1 percent in July, matching the increases seen in the three previous months.

The Korean won also continued to skid, sliding 0.4 percent to 1,146.2, below its 200-day moving average.



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