BlackBerry Ltd shares fell as much as 3.6% on the Toronto Stock Exchange after brokerage Goldman Sachs issued a "sell" recommendation on the stock, citing concerns about rising competition in its mobile software business.
President Donald Trump promised "fire and fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before" on Tuesday evening in response to recent threats from North Korea and its leader Kim Jong Un.
S&P 500 e-minis were down 9.25 points, or 0.37 percent, with 296,288 contracts traded.
After a dip of as much as 0.52 percent earlier in the day, investors appeared to take some comfort in Tillerson's comments, said Richard Steinberg, managing director at HighTower Advisors in NY. 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.
The comments came after media reports that North Korea has produced a nuclear warhead small enough to fit inside its missiles.
U.S. markets closed lower on Tuesday's trade after President Donald Trump warned North Korea, saying that threats will be "met with fire and fury".
Japan commemorates the 72nd anniversary of the atomic bombing on Hiroshima
Sunday marks a somber anniversary - the day the US dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima , Japan on August 6, 1945, 72 years ago . None of the nine countries that possess nuclear weapons took part in the negotiations or voted on the treaty.
Dow Jones Industrial Average snaps ten-day winning streak as stocks struggled for momentum. Energy stocks fell along with crude prices as investors kept an eye on the latest company earnings and geopolitical news.
Pyongyang has made no secret of its plans to develop a nuclear-tipped missile able to strike the United States, which it says are a legitimate means of defence against perceived USA hostility, including joint military drills with South Korea. Both were coming off record highs.
The technology-focused Nasdaq Composite Index (NYSEARCA:QQQ) reversed course to finish down 0.2% at 6,370.46.
The yield on Germany's 10-year government bond - the bloc's benchmark, which has the top Triple-A credit rating - fell with USA equivalents, the main beneficiaries alongside gold and the Japanese and Swiss currencies. They are looking for confirmation the Fed is sticking with plans for a possible December interest rate hike.
U.S. dollar, stocks slip: The dollar is weak against the pound and the yen. The euro edged down to $1.1726 from $1.1751. It declined 23 cents on Tuesday to $52.14.