US Futures Point South as US-North Korea Rhetoric Heats Up

They outweighed gains in health care stocks and elsewhere.

On August 8, the S&P 500 started the day lower, rose to fresh highs, and closed below the opening levels.

The major averages all closed in positive territory, although the tech-heavy Nasdaq outperformed its counterparts.

The Nasdaq finished the day at 6,216.87, a slide of 135.46, while the S&P 500 lost almost 1.5 percent, ending the day at 2,438.21.

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.

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The strength on Wall Street is partly due to bargain hunting, with traders picking up stocks at reduced levels following the pullback seen over the past few sessions.

Positive sentiment was also generated by a report from the Labor Department showing just a modest uptick in consumer prices in the month of July.

Stocks ended more than one percent down in Seoul while the won slumped to a three-week low against the dollar as the U.S. president and South Korea's volatile neighbour dramatically ramped up their war of words.

However, New York Fed President William Dudley said on Thursday he expected inflation to rise and suggested that the central bank was on track to raise rates once more this year.

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump warned North Korea of "fire and fury" in response to recent threats from Pyongyang, which said it was examining plans for attacking Guam, a USA territory in the Pacific with a military base.

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US President Donald Trump said that North Korea would face "fire and fury" if it continued to threaten the States, however North Korea has dismissed these warnings by the USA incumbent as a "load of nonsense".

"I will tell you this, North Korea better get their act together or they're going to be in trouble like few nations ever have been in trouble in this world", Trump said. "What's happened in North Korea is enough to do that".

But are investors really nervous about a possible military conflict with Kim Jong Un? Nevertheless, APRN is down 12.7% in pre-market trading, headed for a record low. Alliance Data Systems fell $6.28, or 2.7 percent, to $225.64. Weakness in the Materials and Telecom Services sectors weighed on the market. It was the benchmark's worst percentage drop since a 1.8 % decline on that same day in May. Stocks took a hit for a third straight day Thursday as North Korea's nuclear threats seemed again to roil the markets. Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman all rose, with the Dow Jones US defense index up 1.48 percent at 409.58.

In the bond market, treasuries are extending the upward move seen over the two previous sessions. Dillard's slumped 15.5 percent after the chain booked a loss for the second quarter as increased inventory led to big discounts. Banks and department store shares also were among the big decliners.

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

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