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Global shares mostly lower on rising unease over North Korea
12 August 2017, 10:55 | Kelvin Horton
Gold extended gains after data showed U.S. producer prices unexpectedly fell in July, recording their biggest drop in almost a year and pointing to a further moderation in inflation that could delay a Federal Reserve interest rate increase.
Data storage company Seagate Technology (STX) is posting a standout gain within the hardware sector, climbing by 2.1 percent.
On Friday, an MSCI index of stocks across the globe posted its largest weekly drop since the week before Trump won the USA presidential election in November.
NORTH KOREA: President Donald Trump warned North Korea of "fire and fury" this week in response to recent threats from Pyongyang, which said it was examining plans for attacking Guam, a USA territory in the Pacific with a military base.
While this gave investors some hope after a jittery week, there were still signs of nervousness in choppy late afternoon trading, primarily due to ongoing threats between the United States and North Korea.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed 0.9% lower on Thursday, while the S&P 500 dropped 1.5% and the Nasdaq shed 2.1%.
Elsewhere, the New Zealand dollar NZD=D3 slid 0.9 percent to $0.7273.
Nordstrom shares were up 1.63 percent at $45.60 following the apparel retailer's better-than-expected quarterly same-store sales. Nine of the index's 10 main groups ended lower.
Markets across Asia suffered a bloodbath on Friday (Aug 11) as investors bailed on fears that escalating tensions between the United States and North Korea may boil over into military confrontation.
The yen tends to benefit during times of geopolitical or financial stress as Japan is the world's biggest creditor nation and there is an assumption that Japanese investors will repatriate funds should a crisis take place.
The dollar was further weighed down on Friday by the soft U.S. inflation data. "If you look at the gold price after the CPI (inflation) data, it tells you that the Fed is not going to be in any rush to increase the interest rate this year", said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Think Markets.
The euro was 0.14 percent higher against the dollar.
Market participants are also nervous about escalating tensions between the US and North Korea.
"On many occasions, we've also heard from the Russians, and from Russian oil producers, that once the deal is complete and free production reigns again that Russia will prime the pump", said Greg McKenna, an analyst at AxiTrader. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, dipped by 2.3 basis points to 2.189 percent.
Shares of Snap were off about 15 percent premarket following the social media company's earnings that came below estimates and a slew of price target cuts. Spot gold inched down 0.1 percent to $1,284.64 per ounce as of 0616 GMT, but was set for a weekly gain of over 2 percent.
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Wall St. Lower as Investors Weigh Rising N. Korea Tensions
Asian markets fell sharply, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng index dropping 2%, while United States stocks had ended lower on Thursday. The S&P 500 index was down 18.45 points to 2,455.57 and the Nasdaq composite index was down 68.32 points to 6,284.01.