US. stocks closed 0.1% higher yesterday, recovering from losses at the start of the session following North Korea’s firing of a missile over Japan.
Despite no significant change in the US economic backdrop, investor concerns surrounding North Korea is translating into a weaker dollar and lower rate hike expectations.
Yields on benchmark 10-year Treasuries fell to the lowest this year and the dollar weakened to the lowest level in more than two years against the euro.
European equities lost 1%, falling to levels not seen since April, as renewed geopolitical risks from North Korea added to the drag from a strengthening euro.
The region’s currency rose above $1.20 for the first time in more than two years, a level that fund managers and strategists have called the “pain threshold” at which the currency could threaten a long-awaited earnings revival.
Germany’s exporter-heavy DAX Index fell 1.5%, among the worst developed-market performers.
Equities gained in Asia overnight, with Japanese and Chinese indices gaining 0.7% and 0.1% respectively. In Japan the yen pulled back from a four-month high against the dollar, helping to spur appetite for technology and automaker shares.