Korean shares end lower on foreign selling amid tensions over N. Korea

Persistent gold buying by local jewellers at domestic spot market stoked uptrend

US President Donald Trump issued a new threat to North Korea, saying American weapons were "locked and loaded" as Pyongyang accused him of driving the Korean Peninsula to the brink of nuclear war.

President Trump responded that North Korea would "face fire and fury like the world has never seen".

Wall Street's so-called "fear gauge", the CBOE Volatility Index, hit the highest levels since Election Day on Friday (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/wall-streets-fear-gauge-on-course-for-biggest-weekly-surge-in-2-years-2017-08-11), after a spike on Thursday but was retreating in recent trade.

USA indexes were set to open lower for the third straight day on Thursday as North Korea's threat to land a missile just short of the US territory of Guam added fuel to simmering tensions with the United States.

Gains among technology companies helped snap a three-day losing streak for USA stocks Friday, though the market ended with its worst weekly loss since March.

(Employees push a trolley laden with crates of one kilogram gold bars at the YLG Bullion International Co. headquarters in Bangkok, Thailand.Getty Images/Dario Pignatelli/Bloomberg) Gold has rallied 2.3% this week on the heels of renewed tension with North Korea.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan skidded 1.55%, its biggest one-day loss since mid-December.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 35.81 points, or 1.5 percent, to 2,438.21. North Korea also laid out detailed plans of how it would launch a missile strike on USA military bases in Guam. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index edged down by 0.1%, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index tumbled by 1.1%.

BAD LOOK: Investor concerns about slowing growth in Nvidia's data center business weighed on the company's shares, even though the maker of graphics chips posted earnings that beat expectations.

"It's been a bit of a roller coaster this week, with all the rhetoric between the U.S. and North Korea", said Jeff Kravetz, regional investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.

The greenback also came under pressure after New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley cautioned it would "take some time" for United States inflation to reach the bank's two percent target, the latest warning price pressures remain muted.

Most large-cap stocks fell across the board.

Spot gold had eased 0.1 per cent to $1,276.40 per ounce at 0322 GMT. Companies in the S&P 500 are set to report stronger second-quarter earnings than analysts expected, according to FactSet, lifted by oil-and-gas companies benefiting from stabilizing oil prices and multinational firms profiting from a weaker dollar.

U.S. producer prices Thursday disappointed, as traders await consumer price inflation figures later Friday. The euro rose to $1.1753 from $1.1752.

BONDS: Bond prices rose.

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