US Stocks Poised for Weekly Decline

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI closed down 204.69 points, or 0.93 per cent, at 21,844.01, the S&P 500 .SPX lost 35.81 points, or 1.45 per cent, to end the session at 2,438.21 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC fell 135.46 points, or 2.13 per cent, to 6,216.87.

USA indexes were trading at session lows on Thursday afternoon, with the Dow and the Nasdaq posting triple-digit point declines, as investors fretted over escalating tensions between the United States and North Korea.

Seven of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were higher, with the technology's 0.36% rise leading the advancers. It was the benchmark's worst percentage drop since a 1.8 % decline on that same day in May. On August 8, despite trading at new record high price levels, the market pulled back and closed lower due to the decreased risk appetite.

On Thursday, the CBOE Volatility Index, a barometer of expected near-term stock market volatility, closed at its highest since the United States presidential election.

Gold prices rose while the yen hit an eight-week high against the dollar and made broad gains against other peers, reacting to the political tensions stemming from the Korean Peninsula.

Late Tuesday, North Korea had said it was considering plans to fire missiles at Guam, a US territory, after Trump's warning earlier in the day.

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As of 5:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday, gold was sitting at $1,260.90 per ounce; the yellow metal soared to a seven-week high midway through last week. The risk-off tone triggered by the increase in tension between the United States and North Korea yesterday picked back up during today's United States session. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 0.2 per cent, to 2,474.92. Pyongyang said it was examining plans for attacking Guam, a US territory in the Pacific with a military base.

USA trading volume has been low with summer setting in and Congress expected to be in recess until September 5. "For now, the North Korea situation bears watching as there's lots of tough talk, but we'll see if it escalates", said Kinahan.

Sterling was sitting at 1.287 against the American currency, while the euro was at 1.17 during Friday trading, as relations between Kim Jong-un's rogue state and the USA president continued to deteriorate. "So we're not going to get to a year-over-year number of 2-percent until some of these very low readings drop out of the statistics 6 to 10 months from now". 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.

Ongoing global glut concerns lingered in oil markets despite a bigger-than-expected draw in U.S. crude inventories, leaving prices volatile. The euro slid to $1.1742 from $1.1752.

At noon, the dollar fetched 109.88-89 yen compared with 110.26-36 yen in NY and 110.58-60 yen in Tokyo at 5 p.m. Tuesday.

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