Markets Right Now: Stocks drift lower on Wall Street

Cornelia Mascio
Agosto 13, 2017

Japan said on Tuesday it was possible that North Korea had already developed nuclear warheads and warned of an acute threat posed by its weapons programmes as Pyongyang's continues missile and nuclear tests in defiance of United Nations sanctions. -North Korea tension also weighed on the Canadian dollar, which weakened against its US counterpart, despite higher oil prices and stronger-than-expected domestic housing data.

Buying interest may be somewhat subdued, however, as the ever-escalating war of words between President Donald Trump and North Korea continues to raise geopolitical concerns.

The sell-off is likely to extend into the European session, with financial spread-better CMC Markets expecting Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40 to open down about 0.7% each and Britain's FTSE 100 to start 0.55% lower.

Japanese markets were closed for a holiday but the in-demand yen powered on, hitting an eight-week high of 108.91 yen to the dollar, adding to its biggest weekly gain since May.

Traders across the globe reacted with dismay to Trump's warning Thursday that his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on the reclusive nuclear-armed state may not have been "tough enough".

Overseas markets were also lower Wednesday.

Investors instead turned to safe-haven assets such as gold, pushing it to a two-month high, and the Japanese yen rose.

The dollar index .DXY , which tracks the greenback against six rival currencies, was down 0.12 percent to 93.53, after rising as high as 93.888 earlier in the session.

The 30-year bond last rose 5/32 in price to yield 2.8107 percent, from 2.818 percent late on Wednesday.

Sterling was last trading at $1.3009, up 0.27 percent on the day.

Geopolitical concerns continued to weigh on Wall Street amid an ongoing escalation in tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. USA crude (CLc1) shed 10 cents to $49.07 a barrel.

United States producer prices Thursday disappointed, as traders await consumer price inflation figures later Friday.

Computer hardware stocks rebounded following recent weakness, with the NYSE Arca Computer Hardware Index climbing by 1.4 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index plummeted 560.49 points or 2% to 26,883.51. Macy's sank 10.3 percent and Kohl's lost 5.8 percent.

Priceline Group slumped 6.5 percent after issuing a profit forecast that was weaker than analysts were expecting.

"Both (PPI measures) were well below consensus and give us no hope that consumer price inflation is going to materially beat expectations", said Chris Weston, chief market strategist at IG Markets.

European stocks have fallen for a third day on Friday and look headed for their worst week since early November previous year, as US President Donald Trump's rhetoric on North Korea over the past few days made investors risk averse.

Australian stock futures dropped 1.2 percent and New Zealand stocks slid 1.1 percent.

In commodities, USA crude fell 0.67 percent to $49.23 per barrel and Brent was last at $52.58, down 0.23 percent on the day.

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