Large-cap tech shares give Seoul stocks a boost

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Large-cap tech shares give Seoul stocks a boost

Korean stocks closed higher Friday as investors scooped up large-cap tech and financial shares amid eased fears over the trade war between the United States and China. The Korean won appreciated against the U.S. dollar.


The benchmark Kospi rose 25.84 points, or 1.13 percent, to close at 2,310.9. Trade volume was moderate at 6.4 trillion won ($5.7 billion).

The main bourse opened higher, taking a cue from overnight rallies on Wall Street, and extended the gains later in the session on foreign buying.

“Global stocks rallied with the focus shifting from the trade dispute to earnings,” said Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities. “Companies with upbeat earnings forecasts led the gains.”

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday Washington is open to talks with Beijing over the trade issue.

Foreigners bought a net 224 billion won worth of local stocks, while individuals dumped a net 137 billion won and institutions sold a net 94 billion won.


Market heavyweight tech companies saw bullish trade. Top cap Samsung Electronics advanced 2.2 percent to close at 46,500 won and SK Hynix, a major chipmaker, jumped 3.74 percent to 88,800 won.

KB Financial Group spiked 4.54 percent to 55,300 won and Shinhan Financial Group was up 2.61 percent to 45,200 won.

Steel and construction shares also closed in positive terrain.

Top steelmaker Posco advanced 1.77 percent to 316,500 won and its smaller rival Hyundai Steel added 1.87 percent to 48,950 won.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction rose 2.63 percent to end at 54,700 won and GS Engineering & Construction was also up 4.79 percent to 47,000 won.

Samsung BioLogics plunged 6.29 percent to 402,000 won after the financial regulator announced the previous day that a 2015 accounting breach by the biopharmaceutical firm was intentional. The Samsung affiliate has strongly denied the allegations.

The secondary Kosdaq rose 8.60 points, or 1.05 percent, to 827.89, buoyed by U.S. Nasdaq’s rise to an all-time high of 7,823.92. Shares of pharmaceuticals and IT parts led the gains, with both sectors rising over 1 percent.

The Korean won closed at 1,123.50 won against the U.S. dollar, down 2.4 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices ended lower. The yield on three-year bonds rose 1.5 basis points to 2.11 percent, and the return on 10-year government bonds increased 1.4 basis points to 2.56 percent.

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