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Stocks and won jump on relative calm in Iran

Jan 10,2020
Stocks closed sharply higher Thursday on eased concerns over a conflict between the United States and Iran that earlier sent global oil prices skyrocketing.

The won jumped nearly 1 percent against the dollar.

The Kospi surged 35.14 points, or 1.63 percent, to close at 2,186.45. Trading volume was moderate at 583 million shares worth 7.04 trillion won ($6.08 billion), with winners far outnumbering losers 737 to 136.

The rise marks a sharp turnaround from a slump for the Korean stock market, as well as other major markets in Asia, that came after Iran’s missile attacks on U.S. military bases in retaliation for the United States killing a top Iranian general late last week.

U.S. President Trump on Wednesday, local time, however, said no U.S. personnel were killed or injured in the barrage of missile attacks against U.S. military bases in Iraq.

Japan’s Nikkei rose 535.11 points, or 2.31 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index was up 0.69 percent as of 3:45 p.m.

Foreigners remained net buyers for a fifth consecutive session, scooping up a net 91.6 billion won worth, while individuals purchased a net 190 billion won.

Institutions offloaded a net 283.5 billion won.

Most large caps ended in positive terrain, with chipmakers continuing to build up gains on an outlook for a recovery in the global market.

Samsung Electronics spiked 3.17 percent to 58,600 won, reaching an all-time high since the company was listed June 11, 1975. The previous record was 57,220 won posted on Nov. 1, 2017.

Chipmaker SK Hynix soared 1.64 percent to 99,000 won while top chemical company LG Chem advanced 1.49 percent to 306,500 won.

Pharmaceutical company Celltrion surged 2.31 percent, while chemical company LG Chem added 1.49 percent to 306,500 won.

Automakers extended their losses, with Hyundai Motor slipping 0.45 percent to 111,500 won, while Kia Motors plunged 1.33 percent to 40,750 won.

The local currency closed at 1,159.10 won to the dollar, sharply down 11.70 won, or 0.9 percent, from the previous session’s close.

The secondary Kosdaq advanced 25.15 points, or 3.92 percent, to close at 666.09.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed higher. The yield on three-year bonds added 5.3 basis points to 1.416 percent, while the return on the benchmark 10-year government bond gained 5.0 basis points to 1.87 percent.

BY KIM YEON-AH, YONHAP [kim.yeonah@joongang.co.kr]