Asia stocks, dollar extend slide as US, North Korea tensions intensify

World Stocks Drop $1 Trillion Following Nuclear Rhetoric

Traders work in front of the German share price index DAX board at the stock exchange in Frankfurt Germany

Gold prices were up almost 1% ( to $1,273.30 an ounce.

Wall Street put a floor under global equities on Friday after a weak inflation reading brought investors back into US technology and other stocks, but gold and the yen still added slightly to the week's gains as tensions continued to escalate between North Korea and the United States.

24k gold in Dubai is priced at Dh153.25, while 22k can be purchased at the rate of Dh144.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS dropped 0.5 percent in its third session of declines, with Australia .AXJO down 1.4 percent. The UK's FTSE 100 Index increased 0.1 per cent, France's CAC 40 Index rose 0.2 per cent, while Germany's DAX Index added 0.3 per cent.

North Korea on Thursday detailed plans for a missile strike near the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam.

News late Tuesday that North Korea was reviewing plans for an attack on USA military assets on the island of Guam came just hours after President Trump had warned that continued threats would be met "with fire and fury like the world has never seen".

A Chinese state-run newspaper said on Friday that China should make clear that it will stay neutral if North Korea launches an attack that threatens the United States, but that if the U.S. attacks first and tries to overthrow North Korea's government, China will prevent it doing so.

In the macroeconomic area, the United States government reported that the number of vacancies in the U.S. rose in June to record of nearly 6.2 million.

The Dow closed down 205 points Thursday, in its biggest decline since May 17, after U.S. President Donald Trump rejected criticism that his threats to release "fire and fury" had been too inflammatory.

North Korea's Nuclear Weapons Program Has Grown With Each Kim Regime
The possibility of a nuclear confrontation is considered remote but worldwide alarm has been escalating in recent days. Residents of Guam have been issued with advice on what to do if North Korea launches an attack.

As well as monitoring the geopolitical backdrop, investors are looking ahead to an appearance Thursday by Bill Dudley, president of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank of NY, for signs of the Fed's outlook on the economy.

Gold prices were benefiting as traders favoured safe haven assets, hitting a two-month high of USD1,275.37. Hong Kong's Hang Seng dipped 1.1 percent to 27,444.00. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 2.1% and closed the day at 6,216.87.

"Japanese equities hadn't been rising much despite positive earnings results, so investors had started jumping at shadows, doubting whether they should really be holdings onto Japanese stocks".

"Exposure to the Swiss franc and Japanese yen perhaps best comes through ownership of global stock and bond market funds, or through currency Liquidity funds".

Commenting on the situation in markets, David Madden, senior market analyst at CMC Markets UK said: "The tension between the United States and North Korea is still dominating the news and it is looming over the financial markets".

Overseas markets were also lower Wednesday.

The FTSE 100 firm announced in March previous year that it would run its US-based asset management operation, its UK-based wealth unit, an emerging markets division and Nedbank in South Africa as separate businesses.

In commodities trading, U.S. crude oil was wallowing around $49 to the barrel amid speculation that a predicted gain in American output will offset OPEC-led efforts to trim a global glut. The stock is up 54% so far this year.

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