Dow drops 200 points on escalating North Korea tensions

S&P closes barely lower despite North Korea tensions

S&P closes barely lower despite North Korea tensions

European stocks tumble and Asia shares test two-month lows as investors react to Trump's threats against North Korea.

A day earlier, the Standard & Poor's 500 index posted its biggest single-day drop in almost three months following Trump's warning to unleash "fire and fury" if Pyongyang continued its nuclear weapons expansion.

A Reuters Datastream index of more than 7,000 stocks across the globe saw its market capitalisation drop from a record high US$61.36 trillion on Monday to US$60.43 trillion at the close on Thursday.

Gold has risen to its highest level in nearly two months, while the Swiss franc has powered against the USA dollar and seen its biggest one-day gain against the euro in more than two and a half years.

The dollar last changed hands at 108.96 yen, down 0.2 percent.

"Today's inflation data put the Fed on pause and really diminishes the fact that there's still some noise going around with the North Korea-U.S. situation", said Phil Blancato, CEO of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management.

Priceline Group slid 6.9 percent after the online travel booking service issued a profit forecast that was weaker than analysts were expecting.

The dollar was further weighed down on Friday by the soft USA inflation data.

The ongoing political crisis that has seen North Korea state it was seeking to strike the US Pacific island territory of Guam within days, prompted gold speculator Dennis Gartman, editor and publisher of The Gartman Letter to say he believed gold was on the cusp on a significant break out.

Crude oil futures are slipping USD0.10 to USD48.49 a barrel after tumbling USD0.97 to USD48.59 a barrel on Thursday.

Concluding with oil, WTI was last 1.0% down on the day, just above $48 a barrel, while Brent crude was 0.9% down, around $51.40 a barrel. Randgold Resources Ltd. and Barrick Gold Corp. were among the best performers, each gaining more than 1.4 percent.

The index was also dragged lower after Beijing ordered probes into three major Chinese social networking platforms over outlawed content. Meanwhile, the country's KOSPI Composite Index SEU, -1.10% fell 1.1% to 2,368.39.

Silver gained 47 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $16.86 an ounce.

Trump launched another rhetorical salvo at the North to keep its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes in check.

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

The Korean won continued to fall versus the dollar, down 0.13 percent to 1,143.5 on Friday for a 1.6 percent decline on the week.

In currencies, the yen strengthened 0.64 per cent versus the greenback at 109.37 per dollar. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, fell by 2.9 basis points to 2.212%.

Nevertheless, traditional safe havens jumped, with the benchmark 10-year USA note yield hitting its lowest level since June 28 and gold futures surging more than 1 percent.

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