Confidence in earnings helps Kospi set recordThe Kospi stock market index broke the 1,500-point barrier for the first time yesterday, as shipyards and construction issues led the market gain.
The Kospi rose 16.91 points, or 1.1 percent, to close at 1,501.06. The previous record was 1,484.15 set last Friday.
“As positive employment figures in the U.S. heartened investors, growing confidence over companies’ first-quarter earnings sent the local bourse higher,” said Park Seok-hyun, an analyst at Kyobo Securities.
Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s largest shipyard, gained 3.4 percent. Hyundai Mipo Dockyard rose 5 percent. Samsung Heavy Industries picked up 4.1 percent, and Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering nudged up 1 percent.
Major tech shares struggled, however, as foreign buying was offset by institutional dumping of shares. Samsung Electronics dropped 0.5 percent to 584,000 won ($626). Display panel maker LG.Philips LCD fell 3.6 percent, as it is expected to report an operating loss for the first quarter.
Builders boomed after a government report that overseas plant orders for Korean construction firms climbed 43 percent in the first quarter year-on-year. Doosan Heavy Industries, Korea’s top power generator producer, gained 3.8 percent. The nation’s top builder, Daewoo Engineering and Construction, rose 4.5 percent. Hyundai Engineering and Construction picked up 3 percent, and GS Engineering and Construction soared 7.8 percent.
Traded volume was 383.7 million shares worth 4.1 trillion won. Advancers nearly doubled up decliners 519 to 263.
The Kosdaq gained 4.54 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 670.54.
Asiana Airlines climbed 2.4 percent.
Traded volume was 840 million shares worth 2.2 trillion won. Advancers edged decliners 489 to 423.
By Yoo Jee-ho Staff Writer [firstname.lastname@example.org]