Equities moved lower on both sides of the Atlantic, while Treasuries and gold gained, amid concern about intensifying tension between the US and North Korea.

US President Donald Trump on Tuesday threatened unleashing "fire and fury" on North Korea if the nation continued to provoke the US.

"Trump in his reactions is something new for all of us," Geraldine Sundstrom, portfolio manager at Pimco Europe, told Bloomberg. "Given the nature of the threats, given the players are new, it makes the situation a little bit unusual."

In 3.16pm trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.3 per cent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.5 per cent. In 3.01pm trading, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index moved 0.3 per cent lower.

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Slides in shares of Walt Disney and those of Boeing, recently down 4.7 per cent and 1.2 per cent respectively, led the drop in the Dow. Bucking the trend, shares of Travelers and those of Home Depot rose, recently up 1.1 per cent and 1 per cent respectively, posting the biggest percentage gains in the Dow.

Shares of Walt Disney fell after the company announced plans to offer its own streaming services.

The company said it agreed to acquire majority ownership of BAMTech and will launch its ESPN-branded multi-sport video streaming service in early 2018, followed by a new Disney-branded direct-to-consumer streaming service in 2019.

"Today we announced a strategic shift in the way we distribute our content," Robert Iger, Walt Disney's chief executive officer, said in a statement.

"The media landscape is increasingly defined by direct relationships between content creators and consumers, and our control of BAMTech's full array of innovative technology will give us the power to forge those connections, along with the flexibility to quickly adapt to shifts in the market."

"This acquisition and the launch of our direct-to-consumer services mark an entirely new growth strategy for the company, one that takes advantage of the incredible opportunity that changing technology provides us to leverage the strength of our great brands," Iger noted.

Analysts and investors weren't so sure.

"This may initially create angst with investors as Disney gives up a 'bird in the hand' from Netflix, invests in BAMTech, content and probably accelerates pay TV subscriber declines," RBC Capital Markets analysts wrote in a client note, Reuters reported.

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Netflix traded 2.4 per cent weaker as of 3.09pm.

Meanwhile, shares of Kraft Heinz rose as the US food and beverage company, which has struggled with flagging sales, and Oprah Winfrey announced a new line of "four "flavourful soups and four savoury sides" under the name O, That's Good! as part of a previously-announced partnership between the two.

The new refrigerated brand uses real ingredients and no artificial flavours or dyes, Winfrey and Kraft Heinz said in a joint statement.

"I love healthy foods and eating from my garden," Winfrey said in the statement.

"When Kraft Heinz approached me for a food line, what got my attention is making nutritious comfort foods more accessible to everyone. This product line is real, delicious food with a twist. You'll feel good about serving it for your family."

Kraft Heinz shares traded 0.1 per cent stronger as of 2.07pm in New York.

"Refrigerated products are on the rise and we saw an opportunity to drive excitement in this section of the store with convenient soups and sides made with real ingredients and easy preparation," Nina Barton, SVP of Marketing, Innovation and Research & Development for the US business at Kraft Heinz, said in the statement.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index ended the session with a drop of 0.7 per cent from the previous close. The UK's FTSE 100 Index slid 0.6 per cent, while Germany's DAX Index retreated 1.1 per cent and France's CAC 40 Index gave up 1.4 per cent.