N. Korea nerves push stocks down for third day

People walk by a TV screen showing a local news program reporting with an image of U.S. President Donald Trump at the Seoul Train Station in Seoul South Korea Wednesday Aug. 9 2017. North Korea and the United States traded escalating threats with Pre

In 3.16pm trading in NY, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.3 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.5 percent.

For the week, the London index is looking at a 2.4% drop, which would be its biggest weekly loss since April.

Markets had seen a tentative recovery in risk appetite in USA and early Asian trading, but as the war of words resumed Asian stocks dropped back and London, Frankfurt and Paris all lost 0.5 to 1.2 per cent. The Nasdaq 100 Index sank 1.5 per cent Thursday while the FANG block of tech giants, including Facebook, Amazon.com, Netflix and Google, tumbled 2.4 per cent. The S&P 500 fell 1 per cent, while the CBOE Volatility Index jumped 32 per cent to bring its three-day rise to 47 per cent.

The Korean won KRW=KFTC also continued to skid, sliding 0.3 percent to 1,145 won to the dollar, after earlier sinking to its lowest level in a month.

On Thursday, U.S. President Donald Trump said his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea "maybe wasn't tough enough".

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But the Taliban denied involvement, saying official claims implicating the group were "baseless propaganda" against it. Faryab province, with Maimana as its capital, has been the scene of Taliban-led insurgency over the past decade.

"There is a continuation of flight to the safe havens after remarks on Thursday evening from Trump about North Korea", said Quantitative Commodity Research consultant Peter Fertig.

"I think this situation is more critical that the market is actually respecting".

The Japanese yen strengthened by 0.5% to about 109.70 per dollar. Chinese mainland shares were also down 1.8 percent. Gold miners bucked the 1.3 per cent fall for Australia's benchmark index. 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.

Thai shares fell as much as 0.5 per cent, hurt by industrials, while Malaysian shares fell slightly as industrials and consumer discretionary stocks lost ground.

Financial markets have tended to quickly shake off North Korea's periodic saber-rattling in the past, dismissing it as bluster, but tensions have lingered this year amid signs that it is making progress in its ballistic missile program and on Trump's growing frustration with Pyongyang.

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The consumer durables and consumer non-durables have recorded growth of (-) 2.1 percent and 4.9 percent respectively. Experts said they expect factory production is expected to remain muted in the months ahead.

On the economic front, data is expected to show that US consumer prices likely rose in July after being unchanged the prior month. Brent crude edged down by 0.13 percent to trade at $51.82 a barrel and US crude shed 0.06 percent to trade at $48.56. South Korea's KOSPI was down 1.7 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng 1.8 percent.

Safe havens benefited from the move away from stocks - gold rising again to around $1,290 an ounce after surging 1.3 percent Wednesday - but other risky assets such as oil and copper held their price. The Nasdaq composite fell 45 points, or 0.7 percent, to 6,324.

ArcelorMittal, Rio Tinto, Glencore, Antofagasta, Anglo American, BHP Billiton and all fell 2.3 to 4.5 percent.

Frankfurt's DAX 30 was also down, shedding some 0.8 percent. It is poised to end the week down 1 percent.

Gold buoyed by North Korea tensions, USA inflation data
The kiwi came off a three-week low immediately upon the release of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand monetary policy statement. Computer hardware stocks rebounded following recent weakness, with the NYSE Arca Computer Hardware Index climbing by 1.4%.

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