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Financial companies rise after U.S. gains

Mar 22,2008
Korean stocks rose for the fourth consecutive day yesterday as overnight Wall Street rallies eased jitters over a credit crunch and economic slowdown in the United States, analysts said.
The benchmark Kospi jumped 22.3 points, or 1.4 percent, to 1,645.69. Volume was moderate at 279 million shares worth 4.4 trillion won ($4.4 billion), with winners outpacing losers, 550 to 265.
“Lifted by overnight gains in U.S. stocks, the index stayed strong throughout the day, with financial and building companies driving the market higher,” said Kim Young-gak, an analyst at Hyundai Securities.
Financial shares scored sharp gains as recent market upswings prompted investors to pick up relatively oversold brokerage and bank issues. Top lender Kookmin Bank surged 6.7 percent, while leading brokerage Samsung Securities rose 4.9 percent.
Shipyard and machinery companies were also among the prominent advancers. No. 1 shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries rose 2.3 percent, while leading power equipment maker Doosan Heavy Industries and Construction was up 3.8 percent.
Builders rebounded on news that ready-mix concrete companies agreed to resume operations after striking a deal with construction companies on prices of concrete. Daewoo Engineering and Construction jumped 2.3 percent, while Hyundai Engineering and Construction surged 4.6 percent.
Telecoms, however, closed lower. Top mobile carrier SK Telecom shed 1.1 percent and the nation’s largest fixed-line communications service operator, KT, fell 1 percent.
On Thursday, Wall Street surged on gains in financial companies. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 2.2 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index climbed 2.2 percent.
The local currency finished at 1,003.1 won against the dollar, up 6.9 won from Thursday’s close, as offshore investors unloaded the greenback, dealers said. Yonhap


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