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Kospi slips due to global uncertainty

Aug 04,2017
Seoul’s main bourse fell nearly 2 percent Thursday to snap a three-day winning streak as foreign investors sold off large-cap shares amid heightened geopolitical uncertainty, analysts said. The Korean won lost ground against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Kospi closed at 2,386.85, down 40.78 points, or 1.68 percent, from the previous trading day.

Foreign investors offloaded 403.9 billion won ($358.3 million) in shares due to uncertainties coming from the new revisions to the current tax system and regulation on the real-estate market announced on Wednesday.

Retail investors bought 356.3 billion won in shares and institutional investors bought 10.1 billion won worth.

Analysts said stocks had opened slightly lower but a further slip was triggered as investors were jittery over uncertainties following Donald Trump’s signing of new sanctions on North Korea. Also, the Seoul government on Tuesday announced its biannual tax revision plan, raising tax rates for the “super-rich” and big money-making companies.

“Geopolitical worries were heightened following Trump’s announcement. In addition, the Seoul government’s announcement of a tax code revision acted as a negative factor for investors,” said Lee Yeong-gon, a Hana Financial Investment analyst.

Most large caps closed lower on the Seoul bourse, with tech and insurance shares pushing down the main index.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics ended at 2,389,000 won, down 2.48 percent from the previous session’s close and SK Hynix lost 3.68 percent to 65,500 won. Naver surrendered 2.14 percent to 778,000 won.

LG Display fell 2.51 percent to 31,100 won, and Lotte Shopping dropped 2.08 percent to 258,500 won.

Insurers lost ground, with Samsung Life Insurance dropping 2.75 percent to 124,000 won.

The secondary Kosdaq closed at 643.09, down 14.43 points, or 2.19 percent, from the previous trading day.

Celltrion lost 3.39 percent to 102,700 won and CJ E&M dropped 1.63 percent to 72,500 won.

The local currency closed at 1,128,80 won against the U.S. dollar, down 4.80 won from the previous session’s close.


BY KIM YOUNG-NAM, YONHAP [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]


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