Local shares drop, won gains ground on dollar

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Local shares drop, won gains ground on dollar

Local stocks closed sharply lower Tuesday as institutional investor sentiment weakened in Korea’s electronics, financial and chemical industries. The won gained ground against the dollar.


The benchmark Kospi dropped 19.33 points, or 0.88 percent, to close at 2,176.99. Trading volume was moderate at 472 million shares worth 5.33 trillion won ($4.56 billion), with losers far outpacing gainers 634 to 209.

Even though foreigners and retail investors scooped up a net 202 billion won and 282.6 billion won, respectively, institutional investors offloaded a net 479 billion won worth of stocks to drive the index lower.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics fell 0.99 percent, to 44.850 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK Hynix decreased 0.62 percent, to 79,900 won. LG Display also fell 4.12 percent, to 18,600 won. Chemical companies also closed lower. Industry leader LG Chem dropped 1.78 percent, to 358,000 won, and LG Household & Health Care went 1.16 percent lower, to 1,368,000 won. SK Innovation fell 1.67 percent, to 177,000 won.

Financial and securities companies went south as well. Kiwoom Securities fell 1.96 percent, to 80,000 won, and Daishin Securities dropped 1.10 percent, to 13,450 won. Samsung Securities plunged 2.52 percent, to 34,800 won. Leading steelmaker Posco dropped 0.99 percent, to 250,000 won.

Auto shares, however, ended mixed. The country’s leading automaker, Hyundai Motor, fell 1.35 percent, to 36,500 won, but its auto parts maker, Hyundai Mobis, inched up 0.21 percent, to 233,500 won. Its sister company, Kia Motors, rose 2.31 percent, to 44,300 won.

The pharmaceutical industry ended mixed as well, with Celltrion gaining 0.49 percent, to 205,500 won, and Samsung BioLogics falling 3.29 percent, to 323,000 won. Hanmi Pharmaceutical dropped 0.91 percent, to 437,000 won.

But the country’s carriers closed higher. No. 1 SK Telecom inched up 0.2 percent, to 256,000 won, and runner-up KT gained 0.9 percent, to 27,900 won. LG U+ rose 0.99 percent, to 15,250 won. The secondary Kosdaq fell 8.37 points, or 1.10 percent, to close at 753.45. The index ended lower as foreigners and institutions mass offloaded local stocks after seeing Nasdaq shares end lower overnight.

The won ended at 1,166.50 won against the dollar, down 3.50 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, ended higher. The yield on three-year bonds fell 1.6 basis points to 1.723 percent, and the return on 10-year bonds lost 1.5 basis points to 1.885 percent.

BY KO JUN-TAE [ko.juntae@joongang.co.kr]
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