SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Asian stock markets slumped Friday following overnight losses on Wall Street, as President Donald Trump’s bellicose remarks on North Korea prompted investors to unload shares in companies that have been on the rise.
KEEPING SCORE: South Korea’s Kospi sank 1.7 percent to 2,319.83 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 1.8 percent to 26,946.81. Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 1.9 percent to 3,201.45. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 dropped 1.2 percent to 5,693.10. Stocks in Taiwan, Singapore and other Southeast Asian countries were also lower. Japan was closed on a public holiday.
FIRE AND FURY: Keeping up his tough talk, Trump told reporters that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s government should “get their act together” or face extraordinary trouble, and suggested his earlier threat to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea was too mild. The remarks, following North Korea’s earlier revelation of a plan to launch a salvo of ballistic missiles toward the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam, gave investors a reason to pocket profit in the sectors such as technology that have been the biggest gainers in recent months, analysts said.
ANALYST’S TAKE: “The tensions between North Korea and the U.S. is an excuse for profit-taking,” Seo Sang Young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities. “Had investors believed a real war was on the horizon, all sectors would have declined.” He added that in China, the U.S. and South Korea, stocks that are showing the biggest declines since the rise of tensions between the U.S. and North…
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