Seoul stocks bounce back to a new all-time high
The benchmark Kospi rose 42.91 points, or 1.66 percent, to close at 2,634.25.
Trading volume was high at about 1.1 billion shares worth some 15.7 trillion won ($14.2 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 541 to 294.
Institutions purchased a net 267.6 billion won and foreigners picked up a net 75 billion won. Retail investors offloaded a net 345.2 billion won.
The benchmark index got off to a strong start as investor sentiment was buoyed by promising economic data.
Korea's economy grew 2.1 percent in the July-September period from the previous quarter, faster than its earlier estimate of 1.9 percent.
The country's exports also rose 4 percent in November from a year earlier on continued global chip demand.
"Strong exports will lead to increased expectations of better performance for export-oriented companies," Kiwoom Securities analyst Seo Sang-young said.
Most large caps in Seoul ended higher.
Samsung Electronics rose 1.65 percent to 67,800 won, and chipmaker SK hynix jumped 3.08 percent to 100,500 won.
Chemical maker LG Chem added 1.12 percent to 809,000 won, and rechargeable battery maker Samsung SDI spiked 2.63 percent to 547,000 won.
Pharmaceutical giant Samsung Biologics climbed 0.89 percent to 793,000 won, and Celltrion rose 1.18 percent to 344,000 won.
Internet portal giant Naver added 2.88 percent to 285,500 won, with its rival Kakao hiking 1.77 percent to 374,500 won.
Hyundai Motor, the country's largest automaker, climbed 1.1 percent to 183,500 won and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors jumped 3.46 percent to 59,800 won.
Steelmaker Posco surged 4.91 percent to 245,500 won.
The Kosdaq added 5.18 points, or 0.58 percent, to close at 891.29.
The local currency closed at 1,106.2 won per dollar, down 0.3 won from the previous session's close.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed higher. The return on the three-year bond lost 0.1 basis points to 0.983 percent, and the return on the 10-year bond lost 0.1 basis points to close at 0.84 percent.
BY CHEA SARAH, YONHAP [firstname.lastname@example.org]
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