"Corporate earnings can be easily overshadowed if there is a real threat of a conflict".
Financial markets tumbled for a third straight day, as disappointing earnings and an exchange of threats between North Korea and the US pushed investors out of stocks.
GOT A PULSE: Health care stocks, which have been in a slump, were headed higher.
"Ahead of the USA inflation numbers gold will likely trade sideways until there's more direction", said Fawad Razaqzada, an analyst at FOREX.com. Stock markets have been rising for the last few weeks and Dow Jones Industrial Average has been hitting new all-time high on many occasions.
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. lost 1.58 Canadian dollars (1.24 US dollars), or 9.4 percent, to 17.89 Canadian dollars (14.09 dollars), after the company said its subsidiaries in Australia were the subject of a tax audit.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was down 39.02 points to 15,217.33 in a broad-based decline that saw many sectors finish in the red while bullion stocks surged almost 1.9 per cent.
SIMMERING TENSIONS: North Korea revealed on Thursday a detailed plan to launch a salvo of ballistic missiles toward the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam, a major military hub and home to U.S. bombers.
"If earnings can stay strong and interest rates remain low investors can look beyond North Korea and continue to rally equities", said Phipps.
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. A small correction during August could set the direction for the next movement in the stock markets. "I do think we could see markets pull back between 1 and 5 percent". Viacom slid 60 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $30.17.
The Korean won continued to fall versus the dollar, down 0.13 percent to 1,143.5 on Friday for a 1.6 percent decline on the week. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan closed 1.37 percent lower.
Priceline Group slid 6.9 percent after the online travel booking service issued a profit forecast that was weaker than analysts were expecting.
Bond prices were little changed.
The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note fell to 2.211%, according to Tradeweb, from 2.246% on Wednesday as prices rose.
The dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency against a basket of major peers, slipped 0.1 percent.DXY as U.S. Treasury yields fell.
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. Brent crude, used to price global oils, gave up 29 cents to $51.85 in London.
CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 109.97 yen from 110.48 yen late Tuesday. It was last up 1.1 per cent at 1.1321 per euro. Chinese blue chips.CSI300 closed flat but Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.4 percent.HSI.