Stocks close lower Tuesday with investors wary of move from Fed
Stocks ended lower Tuesday, as investors kept a wary eye on the U.S. central bank's hawkish monetary tightening stance and China's economic slowdown amid its Covid-19 lockdown. The won fell against the dollar.
The benchmark Kospi dropped 26.34 points, or 0.98 percent, to close at 2,666.76 points.
Trading volume was moderate at around 854.2 million shares worth some 9.5 trillion won ($7.7 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 643 to 226.
Foreigners and institutions sold stocks worth 467.0 billion won and 121.5 billion won, respectively, while retail investors picked up shares worth 562.0 billion won.
Investors are fretting over potential rapid rate hikes as the U.S. Federal Reserve repeatedly signaled at an aggressive tightening policy to counter inflation.
The hawkish stance seemed to gain ground as the U.S. is expected to report higher-than-anticipated consumer price index for March later in the day.
Also, China's continued lockdown in Shanghai over rising Covid cases is feared to disrupt the global supply chain and drag down China's economy, which would dampen global economic growth.
"The U.S. market saw its stocks, especially techs, falter amid a spike in Treasury yields and the continued war in Ukraine," Suh Sang-young from Mirae Asset Securities said. "Heightened concerns over an economic slowdown and supply chain disruptions fueled by the lockdown in Shanghai have also dampened investor sentiment."
On the Seoul bourse, shares fell across the board.
Samsung Electronics shed 1.33 percent to 67,000 won, and battery maker LG Energy Solution dropped 3.29 percent to 411,000 won.
Chipmaker SK hynix lost 0.45 percent to 111,000 won, and LG Chem tumbled 0.98 percent to 505,000 won.
Game publisher Krafton dropped 5.15 percent to 267,000 won.
Kakao Pay bucked the trend, rising 3.11 percent to 132,500 won.
The local currency closed at 1,236.20 won against the dollar, up 3.1 won from the previous session's close.
The Kosdaq dropped 8.01 points, or 0.87 percent, to close at 913.82 points.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year government bonds declined 7.1 basis points to 3.106 percent, and the yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond gained 7.3 basis points to 2.78 percent.
BY SHIN HA-NEE, YONHAP [email@example.com]