US stocks slide amid heightened US-North Korea tensions

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The remarks followed a new report asserting that USA intelligence has assessed that Pyongyang has successfully produced a nuclear warhead that can fit inside its missiles.

Read:Few investors are excited about stocks.

US stocks closed lower for the third day in a row Thursday, led by declines in technology companies and banks, two of the highest-performing sectors over the a year ago.

Late in the session, President Donald Trump said perhaps his threat to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea "maybe wasn't tough enough". South Korea's Kospi fell 0.5 percent.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the TSX by 161 to 87, for a 1.85-to-1 ratio on the downside.

CURRENCIES: The euro slipped 0.1 percent to $1.1176 while the dollar was steady at 109.20 yen.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 24 points, or 0.9 percent, to 2,450. Both the Nasdaq and the Russell are set for their third straight weekly decline.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region saw continued weakness during trading on Friday.

The headlines about North Korea served as a spark to jolt investors out of complacency on the heels of an extended period of calm in the market, said McClellan who shared the following chart in a report.

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The Chicago Board Options Exchange's Volatility Index, considered one of the best gauges of fear in the market, hit its highest level since May on Thursday.

A Labor Department report showed its producer price index posted a surprise drop in July, down 0.1% for the largest slide in nearly a year. The numbers came ahead of Friday's USA inflation numbers which may be key to the interest-rate outlook for the world's biggest economy.

The price of gold also surged for the second day in a row as the December bullion contract advanced US$10.80 to US$1,290.10 an ounce. Some say expectations for its server-chip business were just too high (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/nvidia-stock-could-pause-as-server-growth-slows-down-2017-08-10).

Most large-cap stocks were mixed across the board. The major index futures are now pointing to a modestly higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 21 points.

Adding to the modest losses posted in the two previous sessions, stocks moved sharply lower over the course of the trading day on Thursday. Last week, the Dow broke above 22,000 for the first time.

The North Korea situation isn't the only thing weighing on stocks.

On Wednesday, North Korea's military said it is considering missile strikes near Guam, warning that it is ready to stage an all-out war if Washington launches a preventive war against it.

Watch maker Fossil Group plunged 25 percent after reporting a weak quarter. Investors dipped back into stocks and retreated from assets they consider to be safer stores of value, such as gold.

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