The Nasdaq tumbled Friday on a poor response to Netflix earnings as markets gyrated following reports Israel had carried out retaliatory strikes against Iran.

Netflix reported a profit of $2.3 billion, topping earnings expectations on a jump in subscribers. The drop appeared to be tied to commentary about the current quarter which suggested growth was moderating.

The results come ahead of reports next week from other key tech names, including Google parent Alphabet and Microsoft.

"The way Netflix has responded has created some consternation about the mega stocks' ability to live up to expectations," said analyst Patrick O'Hare, who cited downcast comments from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company earlier in the week as a driver of Friday's poor showing by chip stocks.

The tech-focused Nasdaq finished down more than two percent, Netflix sinking 9.1 percent and artificial intelligence leader Nvidia losing 10 percent.

Earnings became the focus by the time Wall Street opened as investors concluded the impact of the apparent Israeli strike was limited.

Iran's state media reported explosions in the central province of Isfahan. A senior US congressional source told AFP there had been retaliatory Israeli strikes but declined to provide any details, saying they were classified.

Crude oil prices surged as much as four percent on worries about supplies from the oil-rich region but finished with only modest gains.

The initial rush for safety also saw the yen rally against the dollar and gold jump back past $2,400 per ounce, while the Swiss franc and US government bonds won support. They all later gave up much of those gains.

Asian equities bore the brunt of the shock of the news of the attack. European equities recovered to end the day mixed.

Israel had warned it would hit back after Iran fired hundreds of missiles and drones at Israel almost a week ago in retaliation for a deadly strike -- which Tehran blamed on its foe -- that levelled Iran's consular annex at its embassy in Syria.

Fears of a major regional spillover from the war in Gaza between Israel and Iran-backed Palestinian militants have since soared. Appeals by world leaders for de-escalation again echoed on Friday.

- Key figures around 2030 GMT -

New York - Dow: UP 0.6 percent at 37,986.40 (close)

New York - S&P 500: DOWN 0.9 percent at 4,967.23 (close)

New York - Nasdaq Composite: DOWN 2.1 percent at 15,282.01 (close)

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.2 percent at 7,895.85 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: FLAT at 8,022.41 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX: DOWN 0.6 percent at 17,737.36 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.4 percent at 4,918.09 (close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 2.7 percent at 37,068.35 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: DOWN 1.0 percent at 16,224.14 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.3 percent at 3,065.26 (close)

Dollar/yen: FLAT at 154.64 yen

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.0658 from $1.0643 on Thursday

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2373 from $1.2436

Euro/pound: UP at 86.11 pence from 85.58 pence

West Texas Intermediate: UP 0.5 percent at $83.14 per barrel

Brent North Sea Crude: UP 0.2 percent at $87.29 per barrel