U.S. stocks close slightly lower, trimming earlier losses

"So we're not going to get to a year-over-year number of 2-percent until some of these very low readings drop out of the statistics 6 to 10 months from now".

Canada's main stock index turned slightly higher in early trade on Wednesday, as gains for gold miners and energy companies with higher commodity prices offset falls among financials.

His order, reported in state media, came hours after U.S. President Donald Trump warned Pyongyang not to "make any more threats" to the U.S., saying it would face a "fire and fury" response "like the world has never seen".

The S&P 500 finished little changed at 2,474.02 today, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 36.64 points, or 0.2%, to 22,048.70. -North Korea tensions. The VIX, a measure of how much volatility investors expect in stocks, jumped 25.2 percent, the biggest increase since May.

In Europe, Britain's FTSE100 was down over one percent, Germany's DAX traded 0.5 percent lower, while the French CAC40 index was 0.62 percent in the red, as of 9:00am GMT. Or are people using these geopolitical concerns as an excuse to take money out of the market -- tech stocks in particular? The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares declined 0.6 percent.

"Few participants, however, think that North Korea would actually strike Guam at this juncture".

Selling was broad. Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE 6-to-1; on Nasdaq, a 3.60-to-1 ratio favored decliners.

Wall Street closed sharply lower, with Dow Jones down over 200 points on Thursday.

The Russell 2000 is down 39.78 points, or 2.8 percent.

The Canadian dollar was trading at 78.77 cents United States, up from Thursday's average price of 78.67 cents US.

The Russell 2000 is up 15.41 points, or 1.1 percent.

The euro bought $1.1739, compared with $1.1760 late Wednesday in NY.

"The fact that both European currencies have not been hit harder by the U.S./ North Korea situation, indicates that there is substantial fundamental backing behind them".

The benchmark US yield on Thursday was just above 2.2 percent, at its lowest level since late June, as investors bought up Treasuries, a classic safe harbor. Kohl's said net income for the second quarter was $208 million, or $1.24 per share, versus $140 million, or 77 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

High-flying technology names suffered outsized losses on the day, with Apple falling 3.2 percent, Amazon 2.6 percent and Facebook 2.2 percent.

The kiwi has been on the back foot all week ahead of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand's (RBNZ) policy decision due on Thursday, when it is widely expected to keep interest rates unchanged at a record low 1.75 percent.

The $1,279 area is a key technical level, representing a downtrend that has been in force since mid-2016 when gold surged to a two-year peak of $1,374.91. Brent crude, used to price worldwide oils, gained 10 cents to $52.24 in London.

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