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North Korea nerves push stocks to worst week since November

12 Agosto 2017, 07:11 | Azura Castelo

An exhibit at the Korean War Memorial Museum in Seoul

An exhibit at the Korean War Memorial Museum in Seoul

Tensions between the USA and North Korea saw market participants looking for safe havens - like the Switzerland franc.

Trump's comments came after reports that North Korea has spurned a new round of sanctions approved by the UN Security Council. President Trump has warned that an attack by North Korea would mean "things will happen to them like they never thought possible". North Korea threatened a missile strike at US territory Guam.

"Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely".

USA stocks closed lower on Tuesday after Trump's vow to respond aggressively to any North Korean threats triggered a late afternoon selling spree.

Benchmark US 10-year notes were last up rose 11/32 in price to yield 2.2423 per cent, from 2.282 per cent late on Tuesday. July's 0.1 percent increase in consumer prices suggests that the Federal Reserve may be less likely to raise interest rates next month.

South Korea's won dropped 0.9 per cent against the USA dollar to its lowest close since July 13.

The dollar rose against a trade-weighted basket of currencies on Thursday as investors consolidated positions with the low-yielding Swiss franc and Japanese yen supported amid deepending anxiety over tensions between the United States and North Korea. The S&P 500 sank 1.7% from Tuesday to Thursday, the Dow fell 1.1%, and the Nasdaq dropped 2.4%.

Stocks are holding near their worst levels of the session with traders still on edge and very wary heading into the weekend break due to the tense geopolitical situation in the Northern Pacific.

The broad-based S&P 500 fell less than 0.1 per cent at end at 2,474.02, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 0.3 per cent to 6,352.33.

"I think the market would put it as a very low probability that this turns into anything extremely meaningful", said Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist at the Wells Fargo Investment Institute.

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.

Thin liquidity could also amplify market moves, she added, with markets in Singapore closed for a public holiday and many market participants in Japan taking time off this week ahead of a public holiday on Friday.

Overseas markets were also lower Wednesday. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.7 percent lower at 7,489.

USA crude oil crude futures CLc1 were little changed at $48.59 per barrel. Meanwhile, after jumping $10.80 to $1,290.10 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are climbing $6.50 to $1,296.60 an ounce.

USA crude oil futures settled almost 2 percent lower at $48.59 a barrel, as Russian Federation considered a future output resumption and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries boosted its July production numbers.



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