Market sinks on institutional off-loading

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Market sinks on institutional off-loading

Korean shares ended their long rally after foreign investors reduced their buying and institutions off-loaded 179.8 billion won ($169.2 million )in shares.

The benchmark Kospi yesterday slipped 0.6 percent to close at 2,034.39.

Retail investors were net buyers of 177.4 billion won and foreigners bought 12.25 billion won.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics was unchanged at 1,449,000 won. The nation’s largest electronic devices maker yesterday announced 10.16 trillion won in operating profit for the third quarter, 26 percent higher than the same period last year. In net sales, it earned 59.8 trillion won, 13.2 percent higher than the third quarter last year.

LG Electronics, the second electronics maker in the local market, dropped 3.42 percent to 67,700 won. The company also unveiled its third-quarter operating profit of 217.7 billion won and net sales of 13.89 trillion won.

Hyundai Motor climbed 1.97 percent to 258,500 won, and Kia Motors was up 0.47 percent to 63,600 won.

Posco, Korea’s largest steelmaker, dropped 0.47 percent to 320,000 won. Hyundai Steel also dropped 1.48 percent to 86,500 won.

Among shipbuilders, Hyundai Heavy Industries dipped 5.1 percent to 260,000 won, while Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering plunged 5.34 percent to 34,600 won. Hyundai Mipo Dockyard dropped 2.64 percent to 166,000 won, and Samsung Heavy Industries was down 2.38 percent to 41,050 won.

The won ended nearly flat in domestic trading yesterday.

The won was quoted at 1,061.8 against the dollar at the end of onshore trading, compared with Thursday’s domestic close of 1,061.

The won crept as high as 1,060.5 at midday on some dollar short plays after the currency received support from local exporters’ dollar selling.

The won ended the week down 0.1 percent against the dollar, in part due to what is suspected to be a substantial dollar-buying campaign mounted by local authorities on Thursday to curb what the Finance Ministry and the Bank of Korea, in a rare joint statement, characterized as a slightly excessive rate of appreciation for the currency.

BY KIM JI-YOON, REUTERS [jiyoon.kim@joongang.co.kr]

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