ibusinesslines.com
ibusinesslines.com August 22, 2017


European markets end lower amid geopolitical tensions

13 August 2017, 02:07 | Kelvin Horton

Stocks open lower, slip from record highs as Wall Street awaits Disney earnings

Traders working on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange

Nervous markets: Global markets are heading for a third consecutive day of losses amid growing tensions between North Korea and the U.S.

In contrast to the US market, global equities remained weak.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 63.37 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 22,021.97.

Geopolitical concerns took centre stage once again after President Donald Trump issued a new round of comments against North Korea. "As long as it doesn't go beyond just a war of words, this is going to be short-lived".

S&P 500 e-minis were up 1.5 points, or 0.06 percent, with 300,073 contracts traded.

The major European markets are also extending a recent move to the downside.

The escalation provided an excuse for a selloff many investors consider overdue, some investors and analysts said.

The S&P 500 is up 199.38 points, or 8.9 percent.

"Given the great run we've had, seems like some sort of pullback wouldn't be surprising", said Michael Baele, managing director of investments at U.S. Bank Private Wealth Management. It slipped Friday but was up more than 50% for the week.

"It's definitely a good start for retailers" this earnings season, said Nick Raich, CEO of The Earnings Scout.


Retailers were also falling Thursday.

J.C. Penney Co. (JCP) slumped 17% after it reported a wider-than-expected second-quarter loss (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/jc-penney-shares-sink-after-losses-exceed-expectations-2017-08-11). Meal kit company Blue Apron plunged 14.6 percent after reporting a decline in customers.

Singapore banks led the decline, with DBS Group shedding 2.2 per cent or 46 cents to $20.80; OCBC Bank fell 12 cents or 1.1 per cent to $11.20; United Overseas Bank Group lost 1.3 per cent or 33 cents to $24.20.

Overall it has been a strong stretch for corporate profits.

On the USA economic front, a report released by the Labor Department showed a modest uptick in consumer prices in the United States in the month of July.

In other news, U.S. wholesale inflation dropped in July, the first contraction in almost a year and another data point that could weaken the case for the Federal Reserve to raise the benchmark interest rate again later this year.

The data comes amid tepid inflation that has remained below the Fed's 2 percent target, despite low unemployment.

The Labor Department said on Friday its Consumer Price Index edged up 0.1% in July, which was below the 0.2% rise expected by economists polled by Reuters.

Friday's report was the latest in a string of lackluster inflation readings, which have surprised many investors who had entered the year betting on an upsurge in economic growth and inflation.

Federal funds futures suggested the chance of rate hike in December fell to 40 percent from 42 percent shortly before the release of the data.



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