Equities fall on rising tension between US & North Korea

Losses snap Dow's winning streak

Losses snap Dow's winning streak

Banks and department store shares also were among the big decliners. Simmering tensions between the US and North Korea weighed on the market for the third day in a row. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, added 26 cents to $52.96. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 4.02 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,410.15.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 5.99 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,474.92.

Politics lifted US defence stocks. Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman all rose and the Dow Jones US defence index was up 1.6 per cent after hitting a record high.

On Thursday, in response to North Korea's threat to fire missiles at American targets in the Pacific, President Trump said that if Pyongyang "does something in Guam, it will be an event the likes of which nobody has seen before - what will happen in North Korea".

"From a geopolitical perspective, we understand why the escalation in tensions will have shaken some of the complacency out of investors", said Eric Wiegand, senior portfolio manager at U.S. Bank Private Client Wealth Management. -North Korea tensions. The VIX, a measure of how much volatility investors expect in stocks, jumped 34.8 percent, the biggest increase since May. Markets in greater China mirrored the slide in global equities. Reuters analysis of Nvidia's share price dive points to its data-center business which wasn't as glowing as the rest of its results.

Tech shares sank by 2.2%, with the financials, consumer-discretionary, energy and industrials sectors all falling at least 1.3%. MetLife fell 75 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $47.56, while Charles Schwab slid 69 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $41.33.

RETAIL SLUMP: Disappointing quarterly results from big department store chains put investors in a selling mood. Macy's was down 10.2 percent after the company said its sales continued to decline in the second quarter. The stock fell $169 to $1,879.98. Blue Apron shares tumbled almost 18%, despite a beat on revenue.

Macy's (M.N) shares closed down 10.2 percent and Kohl's (KSS.N) fell nearly 6 percent as the companies continued to report a drop in quarterly same-store sales, stoking concerns that their turnarounds may still be a long way off.

BONDS: Bond prices rose. The Treasury yield us 10-year fell to 2,201 % vs. 2,248 % Wednesday night and one of the warrants to 30 years 2,778 %, compared with 2,824 %.

OIL: Crude oil gave up early gains. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 97 cents, or 2 percent, to $48.59 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It added 39 cents to $49.56 a barrel overnight.

METALS: Gold added $10.80, or 0.8 percent, to settle at $1,290.10 an ounce.

While gold, a safe-haven favourite, pared some gains it was last up 1.2 per cent at around its highest since mid-June, while the Swiss franc and the Japanese yen also rose. It announced earnings of 92 cents per share on revenue of $2.23bn. The euro slid to $1.1732 from $1.1752.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: Major indexes in Europe slumped. Germany's DAX Index fell 0.6%, the UK's FTSE 100 Index retreated 1.2% and France's CAC 40 Index slid 1.4%.

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