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Europe: Stock markets extend losses at open

[LONDON] European stock markets fell further in opening trade on Friday on intensifying fears over North Korea, dealers said.

London's benchmark FTSE 100 index shed 0.9 per cent to 7,323.45 points.

In the eurozone, the Paris CAC 40 dropped almost 0.7 per cent to 5,081.92 points compared with the closing level on Thursday.

Frankfurt's DAX 30 was 0.4 per cent lower at 11,961.60 points.

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Market voices on:

"It could be another rough day for European equities," said ETX Capital analyst Neil Wilson.

"Korean tensions are pretty much the only horse in town." Equity screens were also awash with red in Asia as investors fled to safe haven assets after US President Donald Trump doubled down on his North Korea rhetoric.

Traders reacted with dismay to his fresh warning Thursday that his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on the reclusive nuclear-armed state may not have been "tough enough".

The reclusive state raised the stakes further on Thursday with a detailed plan to send a salvo of missiles towards the US territory of Guam.

"European shares are trading once again lower ... continuing their slide on the back of ever more increasing tensions between North Korea and the US," added analyst Markus Huber at City of London Markets.

"While not necessary unexpected - as the US had to respond to threats made by North Korea that they will fire rockets due to land just off the coast of Guam soon - new comments by Trump propelled stocks lower."

AFP

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