Dollar edges higher but outlook wary

Dollar edges higher but outlook wary

Dollar edges higher but outlook wary

Stock markets nosedived Thursday as investors continued moving into gold amid escalating political tensions between the United States and North Korea. The S&P 500 shed 0.9% and the Nasdaq Composite lost 1.4%.

USA gold futures added 0.3% to $1,293.

Apple (AAPL.O) pared gains after rising as much as 1.91 percent to an all-time high and provided the biggest boost to all three indexes, while healthcare stocks such as Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) were the biggest weight on the S&P.

Australian stock futures dropped 1.2 percent and New Zealand stocks slid 1.1 percent.

Pyongyang said it was examining plans for attacking Guam, a USA territory in the Pacific with a military base.

Many markets had already been at record or multi-year highs after an extended rally, leaving them vulnerable to a sell-off.

Rising tensions between North Korea and the United States were once again the theme of the day with only the release of much-awaited inflation figures out of the U.S. managing to divert attention away from developments on that front.

"You have these periods of large runs and that's often followed up by pullbacks and that's what we're seeing", said William Hamlyn, senior investment analyst at Manulife Asset Management.

Trump took specific aim at North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, saying, he had "disrespected our country greatly", and would not be "getting away with it".

US stocks felt significant early drag, with the S&P 500 down 0.5% at the open.

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IG says futures indicate the FTSE 100 index is to open 39.64 points lower at 7,350.30.

Markets were also lower in Europe and Asia. "Hard to assess political risk is now intruding on this scenario".

U.S. equities had been on track for a 10th-straight record session Tuesday and the dollar was initially up after the JOLTS survey showed job openings hit a record in the USA last month.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against six rival currencies, edged higher after Dudley's comments and was up 0.03 percent to 93.577.

Geopolitical concerns contributed to the continued strength among treasuries amid an ongoing escalation in tensions between the US and North Korea.

The dollar was down 0.53 percent against the yen at 109.48 yen, after briefly dropping as low as 109.53.

Spot gold inched down 0.1% to $1,284.64 per ounce as of 11.46am, but was set for a weekly gain of over 2%.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude added 28 cents to $49.45 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. They plunged 2 percent on Thursday on fears of slowing demand and lingering concerns over a global oversupply.

The thirty-year bond auction drew a high yield of 2.818 percent and a bid-to-cover ratio of 2.32, while the ten previous thirty-year bond auctions had an average bid-to-cover ratio of 2.29. Anglo American (LON:AAL) is now leading other blue-chip miners lower, having shed 4.22 percent to 1,223.50p.

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