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Kospi continues mild gains after steep tumble

Feb 06,2020
Shares ended higher for the second straight session on Wednesday, as investors appeared to take a cue from China’s stimulus plans to support growth amid the fast-spreading coronavirus. The won fell against the dollar.

The Kospi rose 7.73 points, or 0.36 percent, to 2,165.63, posting its first back-to-back daily gain since Jan. 20. The main index plunged 5.7 percent last week.

Trade volume was moderate at 563 million shares worth 7.5 trillion won ($6.3 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 484 to 342.

Investors took solace from Beijing’s steps to inject cash into financial markets and add stimulus measures to shore up its economy, analysts said.

“The Chinese government has obviously taken some steps to stabilize the volatile financial markets,” Noh Dong-kil, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities, said. “Investors are taking a positive cue from the moves though the risk to global growth remains.”

Foreigners and individuals bought a combined 890 billion won worth of stocks, offsetting institutional selling valued at 909 billion won.

The new coronavirus has killed at least 490 people and infected more than 20,000 people in China, as of Tuesday. It had reached over 20 countries, including the United States.

South Korea reported 18 confirmed coronavirus cases as of Wednesday.

In Seoul, tech, steel and airline stocks led gains.

Samsung Electronics rose 1 percent to 59,500 won, SK hynix climbed 0.6 percent to 97,700 won, and steelmaker Posco gained 0.2 percent to 214,500 won. Korean Air Lines was up 1 percent to 26,000 won.

Among losers, auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis fell 1.1 percent to 227,000 won, auto maker Kia Motors declined 2.1 percent to 39,400 won and wireless services provider SK Telecom declined 0.7 percent to 225,000 won.

Financial shares saw gains after local banks respectively announced positive earnings results this week. Shinhan Holdings, the parent company of Shinhan Financial Group, inched up 0.90 percent to close at 39,250 won, and Hana Financial Holdings gained 2.69 percent to close at 34,300 won.

The local currency closed at 1,191.50 won to the dollar, down 4.10 won from the previous session’s close.

The secondary Kosdaq was up 0.08 points, or 0.01 percent, to close at 661.32.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year bonds lost 2.3 basis points to stand at 1.306 percent, and the benchmark 10-year government bond rose 7.0 basis points to 1.60 percent.

BY KANG JAE-EUN, YONHAP [kang.jaeeun@joongang.co.kr]


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