North Korea spat rattles Wall Street

Asian stocks lower as US-North Korea nuclear tensions rise

Asian stocks lower as US-North Korea nuclear tensions rise

It was the biggest percentage loss since mid-June.

"(Safe-haven demand) has settled down to a certain extent, but the market is still expecting more news to come", said Brian Lan, managing director at gold dealer GoldSilver Central in Singapore.

The Swiss franc caught its breath against the dollar on Thursday after a sharp rally the previous session, but still held on to much of those hefty gains amid deepening anxiety over the war of words between the United States and North Korea. U.S. gold futures gained 1.63 per cent to US$1,283.20 an ounce.

While gold, a safe-haven favorite, pared some gains, it was last up 1.2 percent, at around its highest since mid-June.

Priceline sank 7.8 percent as it projected third-quarter earnings below Wall Street analyst expectations.

Blue Apron Holdings Inc (NYSE:APRN) posted a steeper-than-expected loss in its first quarterly report as a public company, though the meal service provider's revenue exceeded forecasts and its customer base grew by 23% during the past year.

Slides in shares of Walt Disney and those of Boeing, recently down 4.7 percent and 1.2 percent respectively, led the drop in the Dow.

"There was some skittishness earlier but then some buyers stepped in", he said.

Bargain-seeking investors instead turned their focus to strength in the global economy and earnings toward the end of an active trading day.

"U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called for the peaceful denuclearization of North Korea - a common goal of the worldwide community - and stressed the importance of strengthening pressure on North Korea in diplomatic, economic terms", the South Korean spokesman said.

"Right now people are still watching quite nervously", said Sim Moh Siong, FX strategist for Bank of Singapore.

North Korea announced that its leader Kim Jong Un was weighing a possibility to strike the US Pacific territory of Guam as a response to Donald Trump's earlier comments that any threats made by North Korea will be met "with fire and fury like the world has never seen".

The S&P's record close on August 7 likely helped fuel its latest sell-off.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 50 points, or 0.62 percent, at the start of Wednesday; the Nasdaq Composite was down 44 points and the S&P 500 was down 8.

U.S. Treasury long-dated yields dropped to six-week lows, pressured by U.S.

"Since these are the stocks that have been in the spotlight the most, they tend to have the most volatility upwards and downwards", said Chris Bertelsen, chief investment officer of Aviance Capital Management in Sarasota, Florida. The news drove investors out of risky assets and into safe-haven assets like gold, U.S. Treasurys and the Japanese Yen.

The Vix, also known as the "fear index", closed at 10.96, its highest level in a month.

Ralph Lauren gained $10.38, or 13.3 percent, to $88.53, while peer-to-peer loan company LendingClub added 99 cents, or 18.1 percent, to $6.45. Netflix also fell, giving up $2.58, or 1.4 percent, to $175.78.

A USA proposal for Mexico and Canada to vastly raise the value of online purchases that can be imported duty-free from stores like Amazon.com and eBay is emerging as a flashpoint in an upcoming renegotiation of the NAFTA trade deal.

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