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S&P suffers weekly loss amid ongoing US-N.Korea tensions
13 August 2017, 11:23 | Hattie Nash
Tech companies lead broad slide in US stocks; oil rises
After threatening to visit "fire and fury" on North Korea, President Donald Trump said that maybe the warning "wasn't tough enough". Bond and gold prices, traditional havens for nervous investors, were little changed, and the VIX, a measure of how much volatility investors expect in stocks, slid 6.7% following a 44.4% jump the day before. Inflation has risen 1.7 percent over the past 12 months, suggesting that inflationary pressures remain well under control.
The smaller than expected increase in consumer prices has led to optimism that the Federal Reserve will not be in a hurry to raise interest rates. But some economists say the Fed may stand pat for the rest of 2017 unless inflation accelerates in coming months.
Investors bid up technology sector shares. KLA-Tencor gained $2.52, or 2.9%, to $90.07, while Seagate Technology added 97 cents, or 3.1%, to $32.53.
Significant strength was also visible among software stocks, as reflected by the 1.2% gain posted by the Dow Jones Software Index.
Economic data showed United States producer prices unexpectedly fell in July, recording their biggest drop in almost a year, while separate figures showed the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week. Universal Health Services picked up $2.65, or 2.5 percent, to $108.02.
Kohl's, another department store chain, slumped 8.9 percent after reporting that second-quarter sales dipped 0.9 percent compared with the year-ago period.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 24 cents to $48.37 per barrel on the on the New York Mercantile Exchange while Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, declined 20 cents to $51.70 per barrel in London.
The strength on Wall Street was partly due to bargain hunting, with traders picking up stocks at reduced levels following the pullback seen over the past few sessions.
City Developments fell 4.5 per cent or 53 cents to $11.14, after posting a 17.9 per cent fall in net profit for the second quarter and announced a new CEO designate after Grant Kelley resigned.
USA crude fell 0.41 percent to $48.39 per barrel and Brent was last at $51.68, down 0.42 percent on the day.
South Korea's fell 1.7 percent to its lowest since May 24, but its losses for the week are a relatively modest 3.2 percent. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, was down 35 cents to $51.55 a barrel in London.
But the yen added to an already-strong weekly rally of close to 1.5 percent, hitting its highest in nearly four months versus the dollar at 108.73 yen.
Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.22% from 2.20% late Thursday.
The CBOE Volatility Index, a barometer of expected near-term stock market volatility, closed at its highest since the election. Germany's DAX fared better, trading only 0.2 percent lower at 11,989. Britain's FTSE 100 was down 1.1 percent.
The yen tends to benefit during times of geopolitical or financial stress as Japan is the world's biggest creditor nation and there is an assumption that Japanese investors will repatriate funds should a crisis materialize.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index lost 1.01 percent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe shed 0.26 percent for a weekly loss of 1.6 percent, the largest since the week to November 4.
This article was originally published at 6:55 a.m.
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