Stocks fall slightly after Biden, Xi talks
Stocks inched down Tuesday as investors digest the results of video talks between the presidents of the United States and China. The won fell against the dollar.
The benchmark Kospi slipped 2.31 points, or 0.08 percent, to close at 2,997.21 points.
Trading volume was moderate at about 567 million shares worth some 10.5 trillion won ($8.9 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 547 to 304.
Foreigners bought a net 240 billion won, while institutions offloaded 110 billion won and retail investors sold 143 billion won.
The Kospi got off to a lackluster start as investors attempted to cash in gains from the recent rally.
Stocks hovered around the 3,000-point level during the U.S.-China virtual talks, as investors pulled expectations that the political event may help ease concerns about the fast-growing inflation pressure.
"The U.S.-China talks largely reiterated basic principles, but did not pose immediate negative risks," Mirae Asset Securities analyst Park Gwang-nam said.
Overnight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite and the Dow Jones Industrial Average both retreated 0.04 percent amid lingering inflation concerns.
In Seoul, Samsung Electronics slid 0.14 percent to 71,300 won, while chipmaker SK hynix moved up 0.9 percent to 112,000 won.
Naver dropped 1.34 percent to 405,500 won, and Kakao fell 1.16 percent to 127,500 won.
Pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics gained 0.93 percent to 872,000 won, and Celltrion fell 1.72 percent to 229,000 won.
LG Chem advanced 1.57 percent to 777,000 won, and battery maker SK Innovation edged up 0.22 percent to 229,000 won. Samsung SDI gained 0.8 percent to 760,000 won.
Automaker Hyundai Motor declined 1.2 percent to 206,500 won, with its sister company Kia decreasing 2.66 percent to 84,200 won.
The Kosdaq gained 6.43 points, or 0.62 percent, to close at 1,035.46.
The local currency closed at 1,179.9 won against the dollar, up 1.5 won from the previous session's close.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed lower. The yield on three-year government bonds added 5.5 basis points to 1.967 percent, and the return on the benchmark 10-year government bond rose 5.6 basis points to 1.62 percent.
BY LEE TAE-HEE, YONHAP [email@example.com]