Disney Stock Exacts Steeper Toll Than North Korea On Dow

By Mark DeCambreMarketsMarketWatch Pulse

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is being weighed down by a steep drop in shares of Walt Disney Co. in early trade Wednesday. Disney's shares were contributing to a 36-point slump in the price-weighted blue-chip equity gauge, representing the lion's share, or more than half, of the benchmark's early morning retreat. Wall Street also is reacting to a flare-up in tensions after North Korea threatened to launch a missile strike aimed at U.S. territory Guam, underlining deteriorating relations between Washington and Pyongyang. Still, the majority of the slide in the Dow appeared to be largely pegged to Disney's late-Tuesday announcement, along with quarterly earnings, that it would launch an ESPN streaming service in 2018 and a direct-to-consumers offering in 2019, as it ends its distribution deal with Netflix Inc. . Overall, the Dow was off 66 points, or 0.3%, at 22,022, while the S&P 500 index was trading 0.4% lower at 2,465, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was 0.7% lower at 6,327. Rising political tensions have cast a downbeat shadow over markets but the ultimately decline appears to be relatively muted in early trade.

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