Asian shares mixed with Japan and South Korea down on risk tension

Guam aerial view

Guam aerial view

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

On the currency markets, the pound was down to a three-week low against the USA dollar but mainly due to earlier disappointing output and trade data. The Dow Jones industrial average slid 69 points, or 0.3 percent, to 22,016. Major indexes in China, Japan, and India were also lower.

In recent trading, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 have fallen to new lows for the session.

The latest tensions began after US President Donald Trump on Tuesday warned North Korea that it would face "fire and fury" if it threatened the United States.

"If tensions between the USA and North Korea escalate further, we think that the implications for equities in South Korea and elsewhere will remain limited provided that war does not actually break out", wrote Oliver Jones, assistant economist at Capital Economics.

Investors again sought safe-haven assets such as gold and the Swiss franc, helping gold hit a more two-month high.

Reports early on Tuesday indicated that North Korea was able to build nuclear bombs small enough to fit on a missile. Netflix also fell, giving up $4.57, or 2.6 percent, to $173.79.

THE QUOTE: While the tough talk about the potential for war is scary, investors have heard it many times before. The stock lost $4.08 to $102.90.

BAD TRIPS: Priceline Group slid 8.2 percent after the online travel booking service issued a profit forecast that was weaker than analysts were expecting.

Stocks are opening slightly lower on Wall Street after several companies reported disappointing results.

Stock movers: Henkel fell 3.4% after the maker of Schwarzkopf hair care products, Right Guard deodorant and Persil detergent posted second-quarter organic sales growth of 2.2%, which was below consensus of 3.2%, according to Investec. Consumer-focused companies and technology stocks slumped. The Shanghai Composite slipped 0.4 percent to 3,261.75.

Meanwhile, gold stocks are bucking the downtrend, driving the NYSE Arca Gold Bugs Index up by 1.2 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was off 0.3 percent.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany's DAX fell 1.1 percent, while France's CAC 40 slid 1.4 percent. USA stocks also retreated (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/us-stock-futures-pull-back-as-north-korea-threatens-guam-2017-08-09), although Walt Disney Inc. shares (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/disney-and-netflix-what-the-split-means-for-viewers-2017-08-08)(DIS) were also a major source of pressure on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. On August 9, it rose 1.4% to 11.11. Brent crude, used to price global oils, gained 56 cents to $52.70 in London.

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