Investors Looking For Havens On North Korea Tensions

(EDITORIAL from Korea JoongAng Daily on Aug. 7)

(EDITORIAL from Korea JoongAng Daily on Aug. 7)

Some of Canada's biggest banks were also influential decliners, but closed with only moderate losses. Mainland markets also traded below the flat line, with the Shanghai Composite slipping 0.18% and the Shenzhen Composite lower by 0.14%.

In commodity markets, oil prices fell despite lower US inventories data.

Technology and consumer-focused companies helped lift USA stocks higher Tuesday, steering the market indexes further into record territory.

Elsewhere, French conglomerate Vivendi saw its stock fall 2.1 percent in the morning hours, while Italy's Mediaset dropped only 0.3 percent.

On Thursday, North Korea's military said it is considering a plan to fire four intermediate-range ballistic missiles around the US Pacific territory of Guam to "interdict the enemy forces on major military bases on Guam and to signal a crucial warning to the US".

"The index is showing a warning sign as it is rising after USA shares staged a rally recently", Kagawa said, adding that investors could be positioning for a possible sharp sell-off in the near future.

"We're still close to the all-time high so that makes people a little nervous too, so they might say now might be the time to take a little bit of money off the table". "North Korean nuclear tensions rise, dampening appetite for risk assets (equities, industrial commodities) in favor of traditional safe havens (gold, silver, bonds, Japanese yen, Swiss franc)".

Gold prices held steady after touching their highest in more than two months on Friday and were on track for a weekly gain, buoyed as rising tension between the United States and North Korea triggered safe-haven buying.

Stock markets nosedived Thursday as investors continued moving into gold amid escalating political tensions between the United States and North Korea.

U.S. dairy group Dean Foods dropped nearly 21 percent as its quarterly earnings fell, and the stock received a downgrade from JPMorgan.

"Traders have finally started to wake up to the risks out there, with North Korea acting as the initial catalyst this week", Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at CMC Markets, told MarketWatch. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged down almost 0.1 percent to 5,760.90, while South Korea's Kospi fell 0.5 percent to 2,357.84. Copper fell 2 cents to $2.90 a pound.

Benchmark U.S. crude rose 39 cents to settle at $49.56 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.27% from 2.26%.

Tokyo's Nikkei 225 share index closed down 1.3pc at its lowest since June 1 as the strong yen hit exporters, while South Korea's KOSPI index fell 1.1pc to seven-week lows. Brent crude, used to price global oils, gained 56 cents to $52.70 in London.

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