European markets were trading sharply lower today because of geopolitical concerns regarding North Korea. Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters that a ballistic missile that was fired by North Korea had passed over Japan. Abe has since stated that the missile posed a grave threat to Japan, and that he would ask the United Nations to ramp up the pressure on Pyongyang. The group renewed sanctions against North Korea in early August. Since then the exchange of words and actions between North Korea and the U.S. deteriorated.
As a result, investors worldwide turn to safe-haven assets. According to GfK, German consumer confidence is set to reach a near-16 year high in September. The survey of around 2,000 Germans rose to 10.9 going into September, marking the fifth consecutive monthly increase.