Stocks rise for a fifth day as inflation concerns ease
Stocks advanced for a fifth straight session Thursday, backed by the U.S. Federal Reserve's economic diagnosis that partially eased market jitters over early post-pandemic inflation. The won fell against the dollar.
The benchmark Kospi rose 23.2 points, or 0.72 percent, to close at 3,247.43 points, just shy of its all-time high close of 3,249.30 points on May 10.
Trading volume was moderate at about 1.6 billion shares worth some 16.7 trillion won ($15 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 425 to 402.
Foreigners bought a net 238 billion won, while retail investors sold 686 billion won. Institutions purchased a net 451 billion won.
The Kospi advanced for the fifth session, bolstered by strong foreign and institutional buying.
Overnight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 0.14 percent, following the Fed's reiteration of its stance that the ongoing price rises are likely transient. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 edged up 0.07 percent and 0.14 percent, respectively.
The Kospi's gain was led by tech and bio advances, while construction and insurance slumped.
"After the latest stock price adjustment, tech stocks rebounded on expectations of strong second-quarter corporate earnings," Yuanta Securities analyst Cho Byung-hyun said.
Amid the Kospi's increasing valuation, local investors are eyeing the upcoming U.S. job data for May, set to be released Friday.
In Seoul, Samsung Electronics added 2.48 percent to 82,800 won, and chipmaker SK hynix advanced 2.38 percent to 129,000 won.
Internet portal operator Naver moved down 0.28 percent to 362,000 won, and rival Kakao fell 0.39 percent to 126,500 won. Pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics increased 0.73 percent to 824,000 won.
Automaker Hyundai Motor climbed 0.21 percent to 238,500 won, and chemical firm LG Chem gained 0.62 percent to 812,000 won.
The Kosdaq gained 9.09 points, or 0.93 percent, to close at 990.19.
The local currency closed at 1,113.6 won against the dollar, up 0.3 won from the previous session's close.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year government bonds added 1.5 basis points to 1.191 percent, and the yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond lost 2.5 basis points to 1.59 percent.
BY LEE TAE-HEE, YONHAP [firstname.lastname@example.org]