US markets start lower as Iran-US relations worsen

Friday, 14. June 2019 15:31

Trading on Wall Street started lower on Friday after geopolitical tensions in the Middle East increased as the United States sent its guided-missile destroyer USS Mason to the Persian Gulf in response to an attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Washington blames the incident on Iran while Tehran strongly denies its involvement. Relations between the US and China also remain tricky as the two countries are yet to reach a trade deal and China warned Washington not to interfere in Hong Kong's internal affairs, following protests in the Chinese region over an extradition bill. Meanwhile, trade war tensions led India to consider introducing tariffs on products from the US.

Before the bell, the Federal Reserve announced that US industrial production was up by 0.4% in May and the US Census Bureau reported that retail sales in the country grew by 0.5% in the same month.

The Dow lost 0.37% at 9:34 am ET.

The Nasdaq fell 0.51% as trading began, led lower by a drop in Broadcom stocks as the semiconductor company dropped 8:03% at 9:37 am ET after announcing worse-than-expected results when stock markets closed on Thursday.

The S&P 500 was down by 0.16% at 9:30 am ET.

The euro lost 0.33% against the dollar at 9:39 am ET to go for 1.12394. Meanwhile, the pound was 0.38% lower compared to the greenback, changing hands at 1.26253 as the Tory leadership race continues. The US currency traded flat against safe haven yen, going at 108.3815 at 9:41 am ET.

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