S&P falls 1.4 percent in safety flight on North Korea tensions

Overnight Markets: US stocks dip as Disney earnings disappoint

Wall Street lower on US-North Korea tensions

Equities slid overnight as tension continued to escalate, with US President Donald Trump threatening that if the North Korean regime "does anything" to the US or a US ally "things will happen to them like they never thought possible", after Pyongyang announced its plan to fire four missiles near the US territory of Guam.

Top military brass and President Trump are being sued by five US military members that want to keep Trump's transgender ban from becoming a reality - "in any capacity". The Nasdaq composite lost 99 points, or 1.6 percent, to 6,252.

Grant Williamson, director at Hamilton Hindin Greene, said today's selling was based on the offshore leads, but is also an excuse for investors to take profits from the market which has been hitting record highs.

The S&P 500 volatility index jumped again on the latest jawboning in the US-North Korea standoff.

An Associated Press report that the USA and North Korea have been engaged in back channel talks (https://apnews.com/686ac7c761694b28b67793a1d8297145?link=mktw) for several months even as they exchange incendiary threats may also help to soothe jitters.

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Retail results are also on investors' mind as the second-quarter earning season winds down.

The Dow slid as declines in Apple and Goldman Sachs, down 2.3% and 1.7% respectively, outweighed gains in McDonald's and Coca-Cola, up 1.4% and 0.5% respectively.

Disappointing quarterly results from big department store chains also weighed down the market.

Shares of Kohl's were down 8.4 percent, while Macy's fell 4 percent after the department store operators reported a fall in sales. Macy's sank 10.3 percent and Kohl's lost 5.8 percent. The trend appeared to overshadow strong quarterly revenue growth in the quarter. On the Nasdaq, 1,685 issues fell and 615 advanced favoring decliners.

Benchmark U.S. crude fell 97 cents, or 2 percent, to $48.59 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, added 26 cents to $52.96.

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BONDS: Bond prices rose.

CURRENCIES: The dollar slipped to 109.98 yen from 110.06 late Wednesday in Asia.

Brokers estimate that 40 % probability of a rate increase in December, according to the contracts stock futures on the federal funds. It added 39 cents to $49.56 a barrel overnight. And when the S&P 500 breaks a streak of 50+ trading days without a 1%+ up move, the index actually averages a decline over the next month and a gain of just 0.86% over the next three months. Copper fell 2 cents to $2.90 a pound.

"It is a market that is beginning to encounter some major threats and of course the threat is geopolitical", said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial.

For the week, the Dow is on track to fall 0.9%, its biggest one-week drop since April. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged down almost 0.1 percent. The euro fell to $1.1735 from $1.1752.

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