The US is against North Korea's nuclear weapons but Pyongyang says it will not give up on its nuclear deterrence unless Washington ends its hostile policy toward the country and dissolves the US-led United Nations command in South Korea.
USA stocks opened lower on Wednesday as investors flocked to safe-haven assets amid escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States.
THE QUOTE: "Today's inflation data put the Fed on pause and really diminishes the fact that there's still some noise going around with the North Korea-U.S. situation", said Phil Blancato, CEO of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management.
In a statement delivered at his Bedminster, N.J., golf club on Tuesday, Trump said, "North Korea best not make any more threats to the U.S. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen". The stock lost 78 cents to $3.93. On the Nasdaq, 1,440 issues fell and 1,386 advanced.
Ralph Lauren gained $10.38, or 13.3 percent, to $88.53, while peer-to-peer loan company LendingClub added 99 cents, or 18.1 percent, to $6.45.
"Amid all the sabre-rattling, we expect gold prices to continue to move higher and likely cross the $1,300 an ounce mark in relative short order", said INTL FCStone analyst Edward Meir.
Spot gold added 0.1 percent to $1,261.71 an ounce, pulling away from the previous session's two-week lows.
Meanwhile, the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks finished out the week 2.7% lower, its biggest one-week decline since February 2016.
The Swiss franc was on track for its biggest single-day rise against the euro in more than 2 1/2 years. Technology and healthcare stocks were among the big gainers. Universal Health Services picked up $2.65, or 2.5 percent, to $108.02. The stock lost $5.41 to $101.57.
MARKETS OVERSEAS: Major indexes in Europe were mixed.
Benchmark U.S. crude was down 21 cents to $48.38 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, gained 10 cents to $52.24 in London.
Shares of Snap were down as much as 14.23 percent and hit an all-time low following a miss on revenue and daily active users.
U.S. gold futures for December delivery climbed 1% to $1,291.80 per ounce.
The U.S. dollar fell to 110.48 yen from 110.72 yen late Monday. While the German DAX Index closed just below the unchanged line, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index both tumbled by 1.1 percent.
"With European, U.S. and Asian markets all suffering heavily in anticipation of a potential conflict in Asia, it is worthwhile noting that we have heard similar posturing between Trump and Kim Jong Un before", said Mahony. South Korea's Kospi lost 1.7%, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng slid 2%.
China's Shanghai Composite Index plunged 51.94 points or 1.6 percent to 3,209.80, as investors continued to book profits in cyclical sectors.
Trading was thinner than usual, with Japanese markets closed for a public holiday.