NEW YORK: US stocks have sold off, with the S&P 500 hitting its lowest level in a month, as escalating worries about the Trump administration's ability to push through its agenda rattled investors.
Stocks began to lose ground early in the session, following speculation of White House Economic Adviser Gary Cohn's possible departure.
A White House official later said Cohn intends to remain in his position, but after a short respite, the market resumed the sell-off, with investors appearing to be losing faith in the administration's ability to move forward on its agenda.
The speculation came a day after Trump disbanded two business councils, with several chief executives quitting in protest over his remarks on white nationalists.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.24 per cent to 21,750.73, the S&P 500 shed 1.54 per cent to 2,430.01 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.94 per cent to 6,221.91.
LONDON: European shares broke their three-day winning streak on Thursday as banks fell following a set of cautious minutes from the US Federal Reserve, and energy stocks also weighed on a busy day for company results.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.6 per cent, while euro zone blue chips declined 0.7 per cent.
Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.6 per cent to 7,387.87, and Germany's DAX dropped 0.5 per cent to12,203.46.
Minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest meeting showed policymakers were growing more cautious about recent weak inflation, with some calling for a pause in interest rate hikes.
European banks, which benefit from higher interest rates, were the worst-performing sector, down 1.6 per cent with Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank leading the DAX lower with losses of 2.8 to 3 per cent.
Minutes from last month's European Central Bank meeting, which revealed some rate-setters were concerned about an excessive rise in the euro, sent the currency to a three-week low, briefly boosting the STOXX 600 into the black, though the index rapidly retreated again.
TOKYO: Asian stocks edged higher on Thursday as tensions between the United States and North Korea came off the boil, while the Federal Reserve's concerns about weak US inflation weighed on the US dollar.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.55 per cent.
Japan's Nikkei slipped 0.1 per cent to 19,702.63, weighed down by a stronger yen as the US dollar wilted and shrugging off data showing the country's exports rose for an eighth straight month in July.
Trump on Wednesday praised North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for a "wise" decision not to fire missiles towards the US Pacific territory of Guam, after North Korean media reported that Kim had delayed to decision while he waited to see what the US did next.
Hong Kong shares closed slightly down as profit-taking outweighed solid gains by gaming and social media firm Tencent after the company posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings.
The Hang Seng index fell 0.2 per cent, to 27,344.22 points. The China Enterprises Index also lost 0.2 per cent, to 10,801.42 points.
Tencent Holdings Ltd far surpassed expectations of a 50-per cent rise in quarterly earnings, announcing on Wednesday that its second quarter revenues jumped 70.2 per cent from a year earlier.
Its shares rose as much as 5.5 per cent on Thursday to an all-time high of HK$341.00 before cooling and ending 1.9 per cent above Wednesday's close.
Industrial and materials stocks lifted China stocks, which some analysts said was aided by hopes there will be significant changes to open up the economy more widely to foreign investors.
The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 0.5 per cent, to 3,721.28, while the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.7 per cent to 3,268.43 points.
WELLINGTON: The S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.2 per cent to 7870.06,