Pause in Kospi bull run as investors take profits

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Pause in Kospi bull run as investors take profits

Seoul’s main stock market declined slightly yesterday, ending its four-day winning streak. The benchmark Kospi closed at 1,442.85, down 1.32 points, or 0.1 percent.
“Investors sold shares to take profit from the market’s recent rise,” said Kim Ju-hyeong, analyst of Tong Yang Investment Bank. “And concerns about the local currency’s sharp rise against the U.S. dollar also pulled down the market.”
On the Seoul foreign exchange market, the American currency closed at 938 won yesterday, down from 941.7 won on Tuesday. It was the first time in three weeks that the dollar closed below 940 won.
Analysts also said investors were reluctant to make major moves on uncertainty ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s key interest rate decision. Accordingly, trade volume was lower at 337.8 million shares worth 2.9 trillion won ($3.1 billion).
Core blue chips were mixed. Samsung Electronics closed unchanged at 579,000 won. Hynix Semiconductor gained 1.8 percent, after it agreed with Japan’s Toshiba to end a legal battle over chip patent rights. On the other hand, LG.Philips LCD declined 2.7 percent and Hyundai Motor shed 0.3 percent, amid concerns about the stronger won.
LG Card plunged by the daily limit of 15 percent after Shinhan Financial Group, the parent company, completed its purchase of the card unit’s shares through tender offer. Shinhan added 0.7 percent.
Shipbuilders were strong on a bright industry outlook. Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s biggest shipbuilder, climbed 2.4 percent.
The losing shares outpaced gainers 421 to 329.
The secondary Kosdaq market dropped 1.55 points, or 0.2 percent, to close at 643.82 points. The volume was 788.7 million shares and the value was 2.2 trillion won. Declining shares led advancers 535 to 363.

By Moon So-young Staff Writer []
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