U.S. stock-index benchmarks opened slightly higher on Friday, but equities were on pace for its ugliest week in months amid intensifying rhetoric between the U.S. and North Korea. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was trading up 0.2% at 21,894, while the S&P 500 index was up by 0.2% at 2,442, and the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 0.3% at 6,236. For the week, the Dow is looking at a roughly 1% drop, the S&P 500 is on track for a drop of 1.6% decline, while the Nasdaq was set for a weekly slump of 1.9%. Stocks were set to extend what has been its worst succession of down days since April, until inflation data was released. The consumer-price index showed a rise to a seasonally adjusted 0.1% in July, its fifth straight month of softness, raising more questions about whether inflation will eventually rise to hit the Federal Reserve's 2% annual rate target. Investors have been dumping assets considered risky as U.S. President Donald Trump has escalated a war of words with North Korean leaders, saying on Thursday that perhaps his threat to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea "maybe wasn't tough enough."
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