Business

Stocks fall on Trump's North Korea warning; dollar up after data

Published: 9:25 AM, August 8, 2017
Updated: 5:20 AM, August 9, 2017

NEW YORK - An index of stocks across the globe slipped on Tuesday after touching a record high, following U.S. President Donald Trump's warning that North Korean threats "will be met with fire and fury," while the dollar rose against a basket of peers after U.S. job openings jumped to a record high in June.

The S&P 500 turned negative and hit a session low after Trump said North Korea "best not make any more threats to the United States."

Earlier, Pyongyang said it was ready to give Washington a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force in response to any U.S. military action.

"Trump's response was aggressive and that's why the (stock) market turned lower," said Ken Polcari, director of the NYSE floor division at O’Neil Securities.

The iShares MSCI South Korea Capped exchange traded fund <EWY.P> fell in a volume spike and ended down 0.85 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 33.08 points, or 0.15 percent, to 22,085.34, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 5.99 points, or 0.24 percent, to 2,474.92 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> dropped 13.31 points, or 0.21 percent, to 6,370.46.

A widely followed measure of market anxiety <.VIX> jumped late in the day to close at its highest in nearly a month. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index <.FTEU3> rose 0.18 percent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> shed 0.19 percent after touching a record intraday high.

Emerging market stocks rose 0.29 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.MIAPJ0000PUS> closed 0.13 percent higher, while Japan's Nikkei <.N225> lost 0.30 percent.

DOLLAR HOLDS GAINS

The dollar pared gains slightly after Trump's North Korea comments, still supported by the job market data which underscored the view that the Federal Reserve has ammunition to continue on its tighter monetary policy path. A strong jobs report last Friday gave the dollar index <.DXY> its strongest daily performance this year.

The job openings data "were certainly the latest metric to highlight tightening labor market conditions in the U.S. and to that extent that's certainly a dollar-positive data," said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst at Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington.

The dollar index <.DXY> rose 0.23 percent, with the euro <EUR=> down 0.39 percent to $1.1747.

Sterling <GBP=> was last trading at $1.2986, down 0.35 percent on the day.

But the safe-haven Japanese yen strengthened 0.33 percent versus the greenback at 110.39 per dollar.

Benchmark U.S. Treasury yields spiked higher following the jobs data but pared gains after Trump's remarks on North Korea.

The 10-year notes <US10YT=RR> last fell 3/32 in price to yield 2.2655 percent, from 2.257 percent late on Monday.

The 30-year bond <US30YT=RR> last fell 6/32 in price to yield 2.8451 percent, from 2.837 percent late on Monday.

Oil prices settled lower after a volatile session on increasing exports from key OPEC producers and news of lower crude shipments from Saudi Arabia. Crude briefly pared losses in late trading after U.S. inventories fell more than expected last week.

U.S. crude <CLcv1> fell 0.55 percent to $49.12 per barrel and Brent <LCOcv1> was last at $52.03, down 0.65 percent on the day.

Gold prices turned higher after unease over North Korea, reversing the downward move after the jobs data lifted the dollar.

Spot gold <XAU=> added 0.2 percent to $1,260.26 an ounce. U.S. gold futures <GCcv1> gained 0.09 percent to $1,265.80 an ounce.

Copper <CMCU3> rose 1.05 percent to $6,481.50 a tonne. REUTERS