Won falls to lowest point against dollar in 13 years as stocks fall again
Stocks fell again, shedding almost 3 percent Wednesday as recession woes made investors avoid risky assets amid hawkish monetary policy in major economies. The local currency fell to the lowest point against the dollar in 13 years.
The Kospi dropped 66.12 points, or 2.74 percent, to close at 2,342.81.
Trading volume was moderate at 520.87 million shares worth 8.50 trillion won ($6.54 billion), with decliners far outpacing gainers by 870 to 40.
Institutions offloaded a net 83.9 billion won and foreign investors sold a net 320.4 won worth of shares, while retail investors bought a net 375.4 billion won worth of shares.
The market got off to a good start, buoyed by Wall Street's gains, but fell into negative territory as aggressive rate hikes and fears about economic downturn weighed down investor sentiment.
"Investor sentiment is very negative" Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Mirae Asset Securities said. "Appetite for risky assets waned on recession fears."
Overnight, Wall Street made a comeback following a brutal week in the wake of the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate hike of 0.75 percent, its steepest increase since 1994, to tame inflation.
In Seoul, Samsung Electronics lost 1.54 percent to a yearly low of 57,600 won, while SK hynix retreated 3.15 percent to 92,200 won.
LG Energy Solution declined 2.91 percent to 401,000 won and LG Chem shed 2.64 percent to 553,000 won.
Hyundai Motor decreased 0.58 percent to close at 171,500 won, and its affiliate Kia lost 1.16 percent to 76,400 won.
Samsung Biologics inched down 0.49 percent to 817,000 won, while Celltrion went up 1.30 percent to 156,000 won.
The local currency ended at 1,297.30 won against the dollar, up 3.7 won from the previous session's close and the lowest value since July 2009.
The Kosdaq lost 31.34 points, or 4.03 percent, to close at 746.96 points.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year government bonds dropped 10.5 basis points to 3.558 percent, and the yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond advanced 4.7 basis points to 3.28 percent.
BY CHO JUNG-WOO, YONHAP [email@example.com]