Strong bourse gives securities firms a 15% earnings boost

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Strong bourse gives securities firms a 15% earnings boost

Securities companies operating in Korea saw their earnings rise 15 percent for the fiscal third-quarter from three months earlier thanks to a recovery in the local stock market, the financial watchdog said yesterday.

The combined net profit of 62 local and foreign securities firms operating here came to 514.3 billion won ($458.7 million) in the October-December period, compared with 447.4 billion won in the previous quarter, according to the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS). The tallied brokerages close their books on March 31.

The on-quarter rise came as stock-related profit swung to the black. Stock-related profit came to a net 26.9 billion won last quarter, marking a turnaround from a net loss of 780.6 billion won in the July-September period.

The local stock market underwent a roller coaster ride in the July-September period, due to fears over the first-ever U.S. credit cut and euro zone debt crisis.

After hitting 2,100.69 at the end of June, the benchmark stock index plunged to 1,769.65 as of end-September. The index, however, recovered to 1,825.74 as of the end of last year.

The FSS also said the securities firms saw their net profit slump 16 percent on-year to 1.75 trillion for the first three quarters of fiscal 2011 amid losses from stock investments.

Korea Investment & Securities was the best performer with its net income in the April-December period reaching 181 billion won. Samsung Securities and Hyundai Securities followed. Yonhap

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