Wall Street finished a hard week on a high note

13 August, 2017, 17:39 | Author: Leticia Walters
  • Tokyo stocks fall as US-North Korea tensions rise

Even so, the close was the highest in a month.

The market rose further after President Donald Trump issued a warning to North Korea, saying that its threats will be "met with fire and fury".

US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis told Pyongyang it should stop any actions that would lead to the "end of its regime and the destruction of its people".

U.S. stock futures slipped while U.S. Treasuries, gold and the safe-haven yen rose in early Asian trading on Wednesday after tensions on the Korean peninsula escalated. South Korea, a tech-focused modern economy which accounts for roughly 2% of global GDP in its own right, would also be devastated-and would undoubtedly bear the brunt of the human toll, as well.

The euro edged 0.3 per cent lower to 1.1726 against the dollar.

The S&P fell as much as 0.52 per cent at its session low.

The CBOE Volatility Index, a barometer of expected near-term stock market volatility, closed at its highest since the US presidential election on Thursday, but was down 1.22 points at 14.82 points on Friday. A figure less than 300,000 claims per week is generally seen as a benchmark for a healthy labor market, and initial jobless claims have remained below this marker every single week for an astounding 2-and-½ years straight.

"The tension between the usa and North Korea is still dominating the news and it is looming over the financial markets", said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK. "Tensions are still high and not going away at the moment". MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan closed 1.48 percent lower.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was almost flat on the day at 93.657, remaining above last week's 15-month low of 92.548. However, the rally stopped with all the currency pairs being broadly flat and gold modestly declining as European traders were starting the day.

"Although Japan is close to the epicentre of the crisis, the JPY typically strengthens during North Korean tensions as Japan is a creditor nation and local investors typically "bring money home" when they face a crisis", explains Thomas Harr, Global Head of FICC Research at Danske Bank. Shanghai's main index also tumbled 1.6 percent to 3,208.54 while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 dropped 1.2 percent to 5,693.10. Economists had expected prices to rise by 0.2 percent.

Such tensions remained high, with North Korea's state media saying on Thursday that North Korea will develop a plan by mid-August to launch intermediate-range missiles at the US territory of Guam.

Oil futures prices fell Thursday on a report from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries that said crude production among the group's members rose in July. Gold climbed 0.63 percent, while Brent Crude dipped 0.52 percent to $51.87 a barrel.

The rhetoric, which began late Tuesday and continued into Friday, interrupted stocks' march higher and cracked the calm that has enveloped the market for months.

After touching a more than two-month high at $1,291.86, spot gold last added 0.2 percent to $1,288.81 an ounce.

The euro was down 0.1 percent at $1.175 while the dollar fell 0.6 percent to 109.68 yen.

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