Investors shake off latest North Korea missile test

Investors shake off latest North Korea missile test

NEW YORK, Sept 15 (Reuters) - A gauge of global equities rose and shares on Wall Street set new highs on Friday as investors shrugged off the latest missile test by North Korea, while the dollar eased on unexpected weak economic data that dimmed the likelihood for a US rate hike.

The market expectation for retail sales was an increase of 0.1 percent.

But the weak data could offset the impact of a rise in consumer prices in the month, making it more likely the Federal Reserve will hold off on raising interest rates a third time this year.

Earlier, North Korea fired a second missile in as many weeks over Japan, drawing criticism from global leaders but barely moving shares as investors await the next catalyst - the Federal Reserve's meeting on September 19-20. The Kospi in South Korea gained 0.7 percent.

USA gold futures fell 0.16 percent to $1,327.20 an ounce. Technology stocks helped indexes to gain. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks dipped 1 point, or 0.1 percent, to 1,425. The Standard & Poor's 500 index slid 0.1 percent to 2,495.62.

Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.9 percent while the French CAC 40 rose 0.1 percent and Germany's DAX fell 0.2 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 64.86 points, or 0.3%, to 22,268.34.

More news: China opposes DPRK's missile launch: FM

The unexpected decrease in retail sales largely reflected a sharp drop in sales by motor vehicle and parts dealers, which plunged by 1.6 percent in August after coming in unchanged in July. The Nasdaq composite slumped 22 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,437.

USA stocks are edging higher in midday trading on Wall Street, led by more gains for technology and industrial companies. The Nasdaq composite fell 4 points, or 0.1 percent, to 6,423.

On the data front, USA retail sales declined unexpectedly in August and were revised lower for July, raising question marks about the consumer-led recovery. Losses were capped when weaker-than-expected USA retail sales renewed doubts the Federal Reserve will raise rates in December. The benchmark 10-year yield started the week near 2.09%; it traded around 2.19% Friday. Brent crude, used to price global oils, gained 46 cents to $55.62 a barrel in London.

The dollar advanced to 110.88 yen from 110.54 yen.

The tech index has been the best performing sector this year, rising more than 25 percent, far outpacing the broader S&P's 11.5 percent growth. The euro weakened to $1.1906 from $1.1919.

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