United States stocks slip as North Korea tensions mount

Marco Green
August 13, 2017

The CBOE Volatility Index, the most widely followed barometer of expected near-term stock market volatility, was at its highest in more than a month.

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. Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman were all up, with the Dow Jones US defense index up 1.48 percent at 409.58.

Eight of the 11 major S&P sectors were lower, with the consumer discretionary index's 0.59 percent fall leading the decliners.

Government bonds rose, with the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note falling to 2.211%, according to Tradeweb, from 2.246% on Wednesday.

For the week the S&P fell 1.4 percent and the Dow lost 1.1 percent - their largest weekly drops since the week ending March 24 - and the Nasdaq was off 1.5 percent.

Almost $1 trillion has been wiped out from global equity markets since Trump's vow on Tuesday to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea if it threatens the United States. Financials .SPSY fell the most, down about 1 percent.

Priceline sank 7.8 percent as it projected third-quarter earnings below Wall Street analyst expectations.

The S&P 500 has hadn't a single day move of more than 0.5 percent since mid-July and has fallen more than 1 percent only twice this year.

By mid-morning in NY investors began to look for stocks to buy rather than offload and the Dow Jones industrial average was 38.65 points higher at 21,882.92 while the S&P 500 was...

Among company results, Prudential easily beat analysts' profit forecasts at the half-year stage thanks to strong trading in Asia and said it had met its target for surplus cash generation ahead of schedule. Retail stocks have taken a hit this year, with the SPDR S&P Retail ETF dropping 6.2 percent in the period as investors fear further market gains from Amazon.com.

Health care equipment and services company Henry Schein declined amid a broader slide by health care stocks.

Sina's loss sent shares 5% below a 97.89 buy point in a flat base.

Benchmark U.S. crude fell 22 cents to $49.17 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude slid 80 cents United States, or 1.5%, to US$51.90. Copper rose 4 cents to $2.94 a pound.

The dollar was at an eight-week low against the Japanese yen during Asian trading.

Markets overseas were mixed Tuesday.

Strong earnings this season have helped bolster global markets and the economy should grow in the second half of the year, said William Delwiche, managing director and investment strategist at Baird. Wall Street was poised for a soft opening with S&P futures and Dow futures both down 0.2 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.6 percent.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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