The dollar rose against a trade-weighted basket of currencies on Thursday as investors consolidated positions with the low-yielding Swiss franc and Japanese yen supported amid deepending anxiety over tensions between the United States and North Korea.
On the currency markets, the pound was down to a three-week low against the USA dollar but mainly due to earlier disappointing output and trade data.
"Most investors will be completely out of their depth in making any assessment on the (North Korea) situation", said Koon Chow, emerging market FX strategist at fund manager UBP.
North Korea went further with its threat to the US by providing detailed plans about how it plans to launch missile strikes on the US-Pacific territory of Guam.
Significant strength was also visible among software stocks, as reflected by the 1.2% gain posted by the Dow Jones Software Index.
The euro was down 0.4 percent at just over $1.17 and nearing a two-week low, while the New Zealand dollar tumbled a full 1 percent as its central bank head bluntly said he wanted it lower. Asian and European stocks continued the sharp decline Friday. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.7 percent lower at 7,489.
A small rise in a measure of US consumer prices pointed to benign inflation that could make the Federal Reserve cautious about raising interest rates again this year, which would be favorable to equity investors. The Stoxx Europe 600 fell 1%, while benchmarks in Hong Kong and South Korea - which had been one of the best performers of 2017 - closed down 2% and 1.7% respectively, Friday, putting the week's drop at 2.5% and 3.2%.
The dollar index slipped to a one-week low on Friday after the U.S. data.
Precious metals miners were among a smattering of United Kingdom stocks enjoying a stronger session as investors set course for safe havens.
The data comes amid tepid inflation that has remained below the Fed's 2% target, despite low unemployment.
"The level of risk aversion we're seeing suggests traders still believe the prospect of military action is very small but precautions are still being taken nonetheless, as this still has the potential to escalate very quickly and unexpectedly".
The dollar was steady against a basket of six major currencies at 93.412 after falling 0.2 percent on Thursday, with disappointing US inflation and jobs data adding to the greenback's woes.
The Korean won also continued to skid, sliding 0.4 percent to 1,146.2, below its 200-day moving average.
THE QUOTE: "Risk-averse sentiment is dominating global equities markets, and USA indices have retraced from record levels over the last two days".
After touching a more than two-month high at US$1,291.86, spot gold last added 0.2 per cent to US$1,288.81 an ounce.
Ongoing global glut concerns lingered in oil markets despite a bigger-than-expected draw in USA crude inventories, leaving prices volatile.
Global benchmark Brent lost 0.3 percent to $51.76, after Thursday's 1.5 percent drop.