Stocks in London are seen opening lower on Friday as investors keep a wary eye on heated rhetoric between the United States and North Korea, while in corporate news Old Mutual reported a substantial rise in interim profit.
The greenback slipped 0.83 per cent to a near two-week low against the Swiss franc and fell to 110.11 yen, its lowest in almost two months against the Japanese currency.
In more back-and-forth between President Trump and North Korea, Pyongyang General Kim Rak Gyom, leader of the country's strategic forces, said that "sound dialogue is not possible with such a guy bereft of reason and only absolute force can work on [Trump]".
In Hong Kong, shares ended lower, but developers provided support. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 1.69 points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,374.23.
Until this week, the equity market had managed to shake off negative news, including previous saber-rattling over North Korea and failures in Washington to pass high-profile bills, such as repealing and replacing Obamacare. The S&P 500 fell 1% Thursday but is still up around 9% so far this year.
French leader urges calm in North Korea crisis
Trump dialed up the rhetoric early Friday, tweeting that the US military is "locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely". Trump's warning came after the North threatened to fire ballistic missiles over Japan towards the US Pacific island of Guam.
In European markets, the French CAC 40 was down 0.3% and Frankfurt's DAX 30 shed 0.8%.
Note: U.S crude inventories last week fell by -7.8m barrels, more than expected, but gasoline inventories rose unexpectedly. As well, producer prices in Japan rose 0.3% on month in July, a tick higher than the 0.2% gain seen and at a 2.6% gain on year, also beating expectations.
The US Consumer Price Index (CPI) edged up 0.1% last month after staying flat in June and falling by 0.1% in May.
Retailers slid after department stores Macy's and Kohl's both said same-store sales continued to decline in the second quarter.
Shares of Blue Apron Holdings fell 17% after it said it lost more money than analysts had expected in its first quarterly earnings report since going public in June.
The FTSE 100 firm announced in March past 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.
North Korea Tension: Beijing Tries Balancing Act
The threat itself came after Trump warned of " fire and fury ", urging North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions. At the same time, some of the public's anxiety is about Trump and his off the cuff handling of the situation.
PGA Championship: Kevin Kisner clinging to one-stroke lead
He finished the tournament at 8 over, three shots off the cut line. "Sometimes, I get a little too aggressive, like on 18". That's what I'm looking to do here". "I'm going to keep it mellow and relaxed like it's been the first two days".
Trump Raises Military Option in Response to Venezuela Crisis
On Thursday, Maduro reportedly instructed his foreign minister, Jorge Arreaza , to arrange a phone call or meeting with Trump. Normally, such a declaration by a United States president would spark extended debate and command the world's full attention.
Keep your eyes safe while viewing eclipse
The longest the sun will be completely blocked by the moon at any point along the path is under three minutes, according to NASA . There has been a lot of talk already leading up to the eclipse but here are some numbers about the eclipse you may not know.