Stocks plunge over North Korea tensions

Corporate Earnings Chart August 10

The consumer-price index showed a rise to a seasonally adjusted 0.1% in July, its fifth straight month of softness, raising more questions about whether inflation will eventually rise to hit the Federal Reserve's 2% annual rate target.

"The data confirms the Fed will have a wait-and-see attitude", said King Lip, chief investment officer at Baker Avenue Asset Management in San Francisco.

Japanese markets were closed for a holiday, but the tense mood dragged Asian shares lower and an MSCI index of stocks across the globe was on track to post its largest weekly drop since the week before Donald Trump won the USA presidential election in November.

The loss of appetite for risk followed North Korea's claim it was completing plans to fire four intermediate-range missiles over Japan to land near the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam in an unusually detailed threat.

Global markets have lost almost US$1 trillion since U.S. president Donald Trump said on Tuesday that North Korea "will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen" and then dialed up his warning further on Thursday by saying he wasn't tough enough this week. The index had its biggest drop since mid-May a day earlier.

Markets began to tumble Tuesday after President Trump promised North Korea will face "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if the country continues to threaten the US.

About 15 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had dropped to 21,947.15, down 0.5 percent from Wednesday's close, falling back below the 22,000 mark it first broke through on August 2. Regions Financial shed 23 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $14.07. The dollar index fell to a session low of 93.35 from 93.56 before it climbed to 93.40.

"The level which we are looking at now is $1,300".

Pearson completes remarkable comeback at world titles
American veteran Dawn Harper Nelson was second, .04 seconds behind, and Pamela Dutiewicz of Germany took bronze in 12.72. The last time Pearson raced at a championships was when she won gold at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

"Pretty remarkable, perhaps even extraordinary, considering", said Tim Ash, strategist at fund manager BlueBay.

With Japanese markets closed for a public holiday, Hong Kong led the downward charge in Asia-Pacific as the Hang Seng lost more than two percent. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 share index closed down 1.3% at its lowest since June 1 as the strong yen hit exporters, while South Korea's KOSPI index fell 1.1% to seven-week lows.

The yen is often sought in times of geopolitical tension, partly because Japan has a big current account surplus, and it being the world's biggest creditor nation, there is an assumption Japanese investors may repatriate their foreign holdings in times of heightened global uncertainty.

The Nasdaq composite lost 18.13 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,352.33.

US DATA: The other potential driver in markets will be upcoming USA economic data, including monthly inflation figures, which could go a long way to determining expectations for the pace at which the Federal Reserve raises interest rates.

"It reinforces market concerns that inflation is perhaps just not picking up in the way the Fed had been expecting", said Osborne.

The dollar index fell 0.32 per cent, with the euro up 0.42 per cent to US$1.1819.

Disappointing listed-company earnings for the second quarter, largely due to weaker-than-expected net profits of large firms, also dampened investors' risk appetite, Mr Chaiyaporn said. 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 %.

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