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Kospi up as foreigners go on shopping spree

Dec 14,2018
Korean shares ended higher on Thursday as foreigners picked up local shares after global trade worries subsided. The Korean won appreciated against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Kospi rose 12.98 points, or 0.62 percent, to 2.095.55. Trading volume was heavy at 368.20 million shares worth 7.56 trillion won ($6.73 billion).

“Of the latest developments regarding the trade spat, China’s plan to revise related policy measures appeared to assuage investors,” said Heo Jae-hwan, an analyst at Eugene Investment & Securities.

Foreign investors led the upturn, turning net buyers after three sessions of selling, and picked up a net 484.4 billion won worth of local shares. Retail investors were net sellers, offloading a net 174.4 billion won, and institutional investors sold a net 311.7 billion won worth of stocks. Institutions turned net sellers after three consecutive sessions of buying.

Top-cap shares largely ended in positive territory as chemical shares led the market upswing.

Leading chemical company LG Chem added 1.43 percent to end the session at 355,000 won. LG Household & Health Care increased 1.05 percent to 1,160,000 won, and AmorePacific also rose 2.65 percent to 193,500 won.

Top steelmaker Posco advanced 1.81 percent to 253,500 won.

Auto-related shares mostly rose as auto-parts maker Hyundai Mobis added 3.88 percent to 201,000 won, and Kia Motors closed higher 3.40 percent to 33,450 won.

Bio shares ended mixed as Samsung biopharmaceutical unit Samsung BioLogics jumped 3.93 percent to 410,000 won, while pharmaceutical giant Celltrion skidded 3.97 percent to 217,500 won.

Meanwhile, major tech shares ended in negative territory. Market bellwether Samsung Electronics fell 1.11 percent to close at 40,000 won, and SK Hynix shed 1.06 percent to 65,500 won.

The secondary Kosdaq also rose, adding 5.30 points, or 0.78 percent, to close the session at 681.78. The tech and bio-heavy index was helped by a 1.47 percent rise in the U.S. Philadelphia Semiconductor Index overnight as foreigners continued to pick up shares for the second consecutive session.

The Korean won closed at 1,123.40 won against the greenback, down 5.10 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices ended mixed. The return on three-year bonds fell 0.8 basis points to 1.80 percent, while the yield on 10-year bonds added 0.8 basis points to 2.02 percent.


BY CHAE YUN-HWAN, YONHAP [chae.yunhwan@joongang.co.kr]


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