Global shares were mostly lower Tuesday, as investors were rattled by North Korea’s launch of a midrange ballistic missile that crossed over northern Japan and fell into the Pacific Ocean.
KEEPING SCORE: France’s CAC 40 dipped nearly 1.0 percent in early trading to 5,030.32, while Germany’s DAX fell 0.8 percent to 12,021.52. Britain’s FTSE 100 lost nearly 0.1 percent to 7,329.63. U.S. shares were also set to drift lower with Dow futures down 0.5 percent at 21,691. S&P 500 futures were also lower, down 0.6 percent, at 2,428.20.
ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 0.5 percent to finish at 19,362.55, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 dipped 0.7 percent to 5,669.00. South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.2 percent to 2,364.74. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 0.1 percent to 27,828.67, while the Shanghai Composite inched up nearly 0.1 percent to 3,365.23.
MISSILE NEWS: North Korea fired a midrange ballistic missile into the northern Pacific Ocean early Tuesday. The aggressive missile launch – likely the longest ever from the North – over the territory of a close U.S. ally sends a clear message of defiance as Washington and Seoul conduct war games nearby.
STORM FEARS: U.S. trading had focused on the effects of Tropical Storm Harvey in the absence of other market-moving news. Large parts of the energy and petrochemical industries are based in the Houston area and companies with a lot of stores in the area stand to lose business. While gas price spikes will be temporary, other effects of the storm will last for years. The U.S. Federal Reserve might hesitate to raise interest rates if they think the storm will slow the economy significantly.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude added 26 cents to $46.83 a barrel. It fell $1.30 to $46.57 a barrel in New York Monday. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 1 cent to $51.43 a barrel.
CURRENCIES: The euro rose to $1.2024 from $1.1926. The dollar fell to 108.66 yen from 109.18 yen late Monday in Asia.