Seoul stocks down 1.1% on heightened tensions over North Korea
David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets, said: "Stock markets in Europe are still feeling the pressure from the tension surrounding North Korea".
The S&P 500 index had its biggest one-day drop in nearly three months on Thursday as investors fled riskier assets, with technology stocks leading the charge, in response to an increasingly aggressive exchange of threats between the United States and North Korea. The Dow is down 98.98 points or 0.5 percent at 21,949.72, the Nasdaq is down 65.83 points or 1 percent at 6,286.50 and the S&P 500 is down 16.77 points or 0.7 percent at 2,457.25. The risk-off tone triggered by the increase in tension between the United States and North Korea yesterday picked back up during today's U.S. session.
U.S. President Donald Trump told reporters at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, on Thursday that he will respond forcefully to any North Korean attack on the U.S. or its allies.
Travel website operator Priceline fell 7.26 per cent, weighing the most on the S&P and the Nasdaq, following a disappointing forecast. The Russell 2000 index gave up 24.40 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,372.54.
USA stocks moved lower in morning trading Wednesday as traders weighed the growing tensions between the US and North Korea. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 tumbled 1.3 percent, while Seoul's Kospi fell 1.1 percent.
The U.S. equity market is hovering near record levels and volume has been tepid following the onset of summer. On the Nasdaq, 1,378 issues rose and 892 fell. "I would expect the markets to react again pretty negatively to any more tough talk from either side, but for now, everybody seems to have settled down, and we'll see what happens".
Analysts said media and entertainment stocks also seemed to get caught up in the broader market drop, but emphasized it was often hard to isolate reasons behind specific stocks' movements.
Materials, a sector that includes gold producers and other resource-based companies, was the lone gainer among the index's 10 main sectors, rising 0.7 per cent.
Benchmark U.S. crude fell 22 cents to $49.17 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index has slumped by 1.5 percent, the German DAX Index is down by 1.1 percent and the French CAC 40 Index is down by 0.8 percent. Wholesale gasoline dropped 2 cents to $1.60 a gallon, while heating oil shed 2 cents to $1.63 a gallon. Silver gained 20 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $17.07 an ounce.
The dollar slipped to 109.26 yen from 109.85 late Wednesday.
With Japanese markets closed for a public holiday, Hong Kong led the downward charge in Asia-Pacific as the Hang Seng lost more than two percent. The euro held steady at $1.1752.
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