US markets close lower with political tensions in focus

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US equities did not quite manage to get off the back foot on which they ended last week, with all three major indices ending Monday in the red as political tensions in Asia, Europe and the US took the spotlight.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day down 0.24 per cent to 20,954, with the S&P 500 lagging 0.33 per cent to 2.375.3. The Nasdaq, meanwhile, declined 0.37 per cent to 2.849.2.

The shift to risk-off comes as geopolitical turmoil dominated the news cycle, starting with North Korea’s firing of missiles into the Sea of Japan, then shifting to yet more intrigue in the French presidential campaign before ending with US President Donald Trump delivering a revised version of a controversial travel ban.

The dollar index – which measures the buck against a basket of its peers – ended the session up 0.12 per cent at 101.66, thanks in part to softness in the euro, which fell 0.4 per cent against its American cousin on Monday. Meanwhile, the yield on the US Treasury 10-year note — which move inversely to its price — picked up 1.4 basis points to close at 2.49 per cent.

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