Gold Prices Hit 2-Month Highs, Defensive Demand Continues

Men walk past an electronic stock board showing Japan's Nikkei 225 index at a securities firm in Tokyo Thursday Aug. 10 2017. Asian stocks were mostly lower in Thursday trading as investors began to digest worries over the escalating tensions caused

He said that North Korea "can be very very nervous" if it acts on either the U.S. or its allies, and warned that "things will happen to them like they never thought possible".

Japanese markets were closed for a holiday but the yen powered on, hitting an eight-week high of 108.91 yen to the dollar, adding to its biggest weekly gain since May.

Nevertheless, the geopolitical uncertainty looks set to continue, dealers said, following Trump's fresh warning Friday that the USA military is "locked and loaded" in the event of a misstep by the totalitarian state. "The market is interpreting it as lowering the odds of the Fed raising rates in December", said Keith Lerner, chief market strategist at SunTrust Advisory Services in Atlanta. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged down almost 0.1 percent to 5,760.90, while South Korea's Kospi fell 0.5 percent to 2,357.84.

The dollar pulled back against the euro and other currencies after the Consumer Price Index rose a tame 0.1 percent in July.

The downbeat inflation data added to growing expectations the Federal Reserve may abandon its plan to hike rates later this year, after the central bank left its benchmark rate unchanged in June, citing concerns over the stuttering pace of inflation.

Guardiola unmoved by Manchester City favourite tag
Perhaps we┬┤ve got to ensure that all our players give their all and hope that City are off-colour, but it can happen that way. City will begin their campaign on Saturday when they play away to newly promoted Brighton and Hove Albion .

Wall Street's so-called "fear gauge", the CBOE Volatility Index, hit the highest levels since Election Day on Friday (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/wall-streets-fear-gauge-on-course-for-biggest-weekly-surge-in-2-years-2017-08-11), after a spike on Thursday but was retreating in recent trade.

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 there will repatriate funds in a crisis.

The Korean won also continued to fall, down 0.45 percent to 1,147.2.

"More likely than anything else, the price action was a function of an overextended USA equity market that has been in need for a healthy correction off record highs", LMAX Exchange analysts said in a morning note.

"If the data continues to come in on the softer side, the market might start to price the Fed staying on hold this year", said Sireen Harajli, FX strategist at Mizuho in NY.

United in talks with Ibrahimovic about striker staying
Jose Mourinho has confirmed Manchester United are in talks with Zlatan Ibrahimovic about signing for the second part of the season.

On Thursday the greenback had shed 0.8 percent versus the yen, with the Japanese currency rallying broadly against most major currencies. The data suggested little sign of inflationary pressure within the economy.

Gold, a classic safe haven asset, was trading at around $1,292 per ounce, up more than two percent this week and near a nine-week high.

The 30-year bond US30YT=RR last rose 28/32 in price to yield 2.7759 percent, from 2.818 percent late on Wednesday.

Ongoing global glut concerns lingered in oil markets despite a bigger-than-expected draw in U.S. crude inventories, leaving prices volatile.

Mourinho: Manchester United in talks to re-sign Ibrahimovic
Mourinho does not necessarily buy into the idea that more goals are needed, just a fairer spread to help them win more matches. He added: "If the remaining 25 per cent doesn't arrive by August 31, I will not moan".

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