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Seoul shares end lower on foreign selling amid tensions over North Korea

12 Août 2017

The Dow industrials and S&P 500 rose 0.2% in recent trading, though the S&P 500 is set to end the week down 1.4%, its biggest loss since March. The Dow is up 34.62 points or 0.2% at 21,878.63, the Nasdaq is up 25.62 points or 0.4% at 6,242.49 and the S&P 500 is up 4.36 points or 0.2% at 2,442.57.

"We do just not know what happens next with the North Korea situation", said BNY Mellon FX strategist Neil Mellor.

Away from the geopolitical drama, USA inflation data is due at 1330 GMT.

Silver was up 0.2 percent to $17.10 per ounce after hitting $17.24, its highest since June 14, in the previous session. Core prices had been expected to rise by 0.2%.

He has now gone further, saying the warning may not have been tough enough and that if North Korea did what it had threatened, it faced "an event the likes of which nobody's seen before".

"Although it is considered highly unlikely that this tension will escalate into a nuclear war, the market still needs to see how President Trump will eventually deal with his advocating "fire and fury" against North Korea's threat", said Margaret Yang Yan, market analyst at CMC Markets Singapore. "Defusing the North Korea threat will take smart, steady leadership and stronger diplomatic ties with our key allies".

But are investors really nervous about a possible military conflict with Kim Jong Un?

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was almost flat on the day at 93.646, remaining above last week's 15-month low of 92.548.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1 339 to 865.

Yesterday, the rupee had tumbled by 24 paise to hit a fresh one-week low of 64.08 against the United States dollar.

Data storage company Seagate Technology (STX) is posting a standout gain within the hardware sector, climbing by 2.1%. That marks the sixth straight trading day of declines for the loonie against a strengthening greenback.

The rhetoric, which began late Tuesday and continued through Friday morning, cracked the calm that has cocooned the market for months, and threatened to trip up stocks' steady climb higher.

However, an Associated Press report that the USA and North Korea have been engaged in back channel talks ( for several months even as they exchange incendiary threats helped to soothe some of the jitters. The Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.

In European markets, the French CAC 40 was down 0.7% and Frankfurt's DAX 30 shed 1.2%.

However, market watchers said equity markets remained focused on the deepening geopolitical crisis, as angry threats from Washington and Pyongyang stoke fears of a catastrophic miscalculation with global consequences.

Benchmark 10-year notes were last up 12/32 in price to yield 2.201 percent, from 2.242 percent late on Wednesday.

Seoul shares end lower on foreign selling amid tensions over North Korea