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Tech and finance stocks pull down local market

Mar 14,2007
Seoul stock markets declined yesterday on massive program selling by institutional investors. Major technology shares, including Samsung Electronics and SK Telecom, hammered down the market.
The benchmark Kospi lost 5.28 points, or 0.4 percent, to close at 1,436.05.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics slid 0.3 percent to close at 600,000 won ($635). Other tech shares were mostly weak. Hynix Semiconductor, the nation’s number two computer memory chipmaker, lost 2.1 percent, and LG Electronics, one of Asia’s biggest home appliance makers, lost 0.7 percent. LG.Philips LCD also dropped 0.7 percent.
Korea Exchange Bank, Korea’s fifth-largest lender, lost 0.3 percent a day after Korea’s audit board urged the top financial regulator here to review its approval of Korea Exchange Bank’s 2003 sale to Lone Star Funds. Other financial shares also faltered, as the industry leader Kookmin Bank lost 0.8 percent and the number two Shinhan Financial Group skidded 2.7 percent. Woori Finance Holdings and Hana Financial Group also shed 0.4 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.
Shares of Busan Bank gained 4.4 percent after local analysts predicted its profit would expand in the first quarter.
“Busan Bank’s net income for the first quarter is expected to rise by more than 30 percent from a year earlier thanks to its corporate reshuffle last year and reduced provision to cover bad debts,” said Han Jeong-tae, an analyst at Mirae Asset Securities.
Hanjin Shipping rose 2 percent on positive economic data showing local shipping volume is rising. Trading volume was 251 million shares, worth 2.8 trillion won. Decliners led advancers 440 to 305.
The tech-laced Kosdaq inched up 0.79 points, or 0.1 percent, to end at 620.41. Trading volume was 839.4 million shares worth 2 trillion won. Decliners outpaced advancers 503 to 393.


By Jung Ha-won Staff Writer [hawon@joongang.co.kr]



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