Trade war takes a toll once more on bourses
The Kospi fell after three consecutive sessions of gains, dropping 17.98 points or 0.86 percent to close at 2,082.58. Trading volume was moderate at 274.84 million shares worth 4.80 trillion won ($4.26 billion).
“The trade dispute between Washington and China continued to weigh down the market, and the sharp decreases in tech shares in the U.S. market hurt Korean investors’ sentiment as well,” said Lee Young-gon, an analyst at Hana Financial Investment.
Offshore investors continued to sell on the main bourse for the sixth consecutive session, unloading a net 255.8 billion won worth of shares. Retail investors were net buyers, picking up a net 29.8 billion won. Institutional investors bought a net 89.7 billion won worth of shares.
Most large-cap shares ended in negative territory.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics dropped 1.95 percent to 42,800 won, and No.2 chipmaker SK Hynix fell 3.30 percent to 67,500 won.
Pharmaceutical giant Celltrion lost ground, declining 0.66 percent to 227,500 won.
Carmakers also fell, with Hyundai Motor tumbling 3.94 percent to 97,500 won, and Kia Motors falling 4.71 percent to 28,300 won.
Chemical companies were losers as LG Chemical dropped 1.74 percent to 339,500 won, and Lotte Chemical fell 4.29 percent to 279,000 won.
Leading steelmaker Posco inched 0.38 percent down to 259,500 won.
Meanwhile, refiners ended in positive territory as SK Innovation rose 0.74 percent to 204,500 won.
Telecommunications shares also ended up, with industry leader SK Telecom rising 2.36 percent to 282,500 won, and KT adding 2.53 percent to 30,350 won. LG telecommunications unit LG U+ advanced 3.24 percent to 15,950 won.
The secondary Kosdaq also ended down, falling 11.32 points or 1.61 percent to 690.81. The tech and bio-heavy index was weighed down by a 3.86 percent decline in the U.S. Philadelphia Semiconductor Index overnight. Institutional investors were net sellers for the fifteenth consecutive session.
The Korean won closed at 1,125.80 won against the greenback, down 2.80 won from the previous session.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, ended mixed. The return on three-year bonds fell 0.2 basis points to 1.94 percent, while the yield on 10-year bonds rose 0.5 basis points to 2.21 percent.
BY CHAE YUN-HWAN, YONHAP [email@example.com]