USA stocks tumble on North Korea worries

Michael Kors store in Edinburgh

Michael Kors store in Edinburgh

A sell-off among heavyweight basic resources stocks heightened the third day of losses for European shares and put them on track for their worst week this year as ratcheting political tensions dented equities worldwide.

Apart from geopolitical worries, some technical analysts like Tom McClellan, editor of the McClellan Market Report, blamed seasonality for this week's retreat given August's record as a weak month for stocks. Consumer-focused companies and banks were among the biggest decliners. Utilities eked out a small gain.

In other words, the market isn't exactly going straight up. "You're less than 2 percent off the high for the S&P heading into a weekend where uncertainty with North Korea still lingers".

The S&P 500 finished little changed at 2,474.02 today, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 36.64 points, or 0.2%, to 22,048.70. May 17 was the last time the three indexes had a bigger single-day decline.

The CBOE Volatility Index, the most widely followed barometer of expected near-term market volatility, was up as much as 12.63 points, its highest in more than a month.

The Russian dollar-traded index RTS was down 1.49 percent, and ruble-traded MICEX fell 1.29 percent by midday. All the indexes are down for the week.

US job openings jumped to a record high in June, outpacing hiring, the latest indication that companies are having trouble finding qualified workers.

Man 'tried to sell' kidnapped model online
Police are now working to identify Herba's accomplices and established what happened to the woman while she was help captive. Her kidnapper allegedly threatened to auction her on the internet while trying to extort €300,000 (£270,000) from her agent.

Wall Street put a floor under global equities on Friday after a weak inflation reading brought investors back into USA stocks even as tensions between the United States and North Korea continued to escalate, though that tension still drove safe-haven buying of gold and the yen.

SIMMERING TENSIONS: North Korea revealed on Thursday a detailed plan to launch a salvo of ballistic missiles toward the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam, a major military hub and home to U.S. bombers. Later, speaking to reporters, President Donald Trump demanded that North Korea "get their act together" or face extraordinary trouble.

The VIX, a measure of Wall Street volatility, spiked more than 30% Thursday. That's the biggest increase since May.

The Swiss franc reversed a two-week losing streak and gained 1.1 per cent to as firm as 0.9611 per dollar.

"We predicted KOSPI's July support level to be 2,300, but there is a possibility that it will fall below the mark in a couple of months", he said. "I don't see it as a fear-driven sell-off". The Dutch-Belgian supermarket company reported a 68 percent jump in second-quarter net profit and said it expects underlying operating margin for the full year 2017 to be broadly in line with the first half. It is still the best performing G10 currency so far this year with gains of more than 11 percent against the dollar. Ten-year USA yields dropped 4.3 basis points to 2.24 per cent and German equivalents fell 3 bps to 0.43 per cent, a six-week low.

The dollar held steady at 110.02 yen, having pulled up from Wednesday's low of 109.56 yen, its lowest level since June 15.

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