Stocks end three-day winning streak on stimulus concerns
Stocks ended a three-day winning streak Thursday amid lingering uncertainties over a new stimulus push in the world's largest economy. The won fell against the dollar.
The benchmark Kospi lost 15.81 points, or 0.67 percent, to close at 2,355.05.
Trading volume was moderate at about 802 million shares worth some 9.6 trillion won ($8.5 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 543 to 303.
Foreigners sold a net 73 billion won, while retail investors purchased a net 67 billion won. Institutions bought a net 8 billion won.
Local stocks got off to a weak start and tumbled over 1 percent at the day's lowest, largely on long-stalled stimulus talks in the United States, one of Korea's largest trade partners.
"Local stocks fell as concerns over the U.S. stimulus deal sparked foreign sell-offs," Kiwoom Securities analyst Seo Sang-young said.
The number of daily local coronavirus cases in South Korea also hit a monthly high, dampening investor sentiment.
In Seoul, most large caps traded lower.
Samsung Electronics dipped 1.31 percent to 60,100 won, and chipmaker SK hynix dropped 0.6 percent to 83,300 won.
Pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics sank 4.36 percent to 658,000 won, and Celltrion lost 2.66 percent to 237,500 won.
Internet portal Naver declined 1.51 percent to 293,000 won, but chemical maker LG Chem gained 3.57 percent to 639,000 won.
Steelmaker Posco rose 1.45 percent to 210,000 won, while Hyundai Motor declined 1.81 percent to 162,500 won.
Big Hit Entertainment, the management agency of K-pop phenomenon BTS, rose 0.56 percent to 180,000 won.
The Kosdaq fell 17.97 points, or 2.16 percent, to close at 812.7.
The local currency was trading at 1,132.9 won against the dollar, up 1.0 won from the previous session's close.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year bonds fell 0.8 basis points to close at 0.928 percent, and the return on 10-year bonds rose 3.4 basis points to close at 0.82 percent.
BY LEE JEE-YOUNG, YONHAP [email@example.com]