All three major stock indexes dropped 0.2 per cent at the close, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average finishing at 22,085.34, halting a almost two-week run of closing records.
Tokyo stocks opened higher Thursday as worries about US-North Korea tensions eased while the yen's appreciation against the dollar peaked out.
Trump, whose threat this week to bring "fire and fury" was dismissed by North Korea, said Thursday his statement might not have been "tough enough". Secretary of State Rex Tillerson later insisted the US isn't signalling it's about to mete out a military response despite threats from North Korea suggesting it could attack Guam, a USA island territory in the Pacific.
On the U.S. economic front, the Labor Department released a report showing labor productivity increased by slightly more than expected in the second quarter. Gold also climbed after Indian imports of the metal were said to have doubled. Economists had expected a 205,000 annual rate.
The Labor Department also said unit labor costs rose by 0.6% in the second quarter following an upwardly revised 5.4% spike in the first quarter.
Spot gold had eased 0.1 per cent to $1,276.40 per ounce at 0322 GMT.
The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 Index were Fresnillo up 72p to 1,544p, Randgold Resources up 200p to 7,380p, WorldPay Group up 4.9p to 388.5p, BAE Systems up 7p to 582.5p.
"In the event that war should break out, and that leads to an acceptance of further loose monetary and fiscal policy in the USA, we would expect a falling United States dollar real yield environment, giving renewed, and sustainable, impetus to monetary metals prices".
Concerns over geopolitical risks probably led investors to pare back bearish bets against the yen and the Swiss franc, said Satoshi Okagawa, senior global markets analyst for Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in Singapore, referring to the gains in those currencies on Wednesday.
The dollar index, which measures against a basket of currencies, fell 0.05 percent.
The ex-dividend date, also known as the reinvestment date, involves the timing of payment of dividends on stocks of corporations, income trusts, and other financial holdings, both publicly and privately held.
Heightened geopolitical tension remained a drag on global equity markets, with havens assets from the yen to gold in demand. US shares were also set to dip, with Dow and S&P futures both inching down 0.1 percent.