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Seegene soars while markets close down after 2-day rally

Mar 27,2020
Stocks finished lower Thursday after two straight days of robust gains, as investors cashed in on some of their recent gains. The Korean won lost ground against the dollar.

The benchmark Kospi shed 18.52 points, or 1.09 percent, to close at 1,686.24, ending its two-day winning streak.

The index spiked nearly 14.5 percent over the last two days on stimulus hopes.

Trading volume was high at 982 million shares worth 12.2 trillion won ($9.9 billion), with gainers far outpacing losers 698 to 183.

Foreigners extended their selling streak to a 16th consecutive session, offloading a net 531 billion won worth of stocks on the main bourse. Institutions dumped a net 214 billion won, while retail investors scooped up a net 716 billion won.

Large caps were mixed, although tech shares closed in negative terrain.

Samsung Electronics slid 1.75 percent to 47,800 won, and SK hynix plunged 4.5 percent to 80,700 won.

Pharmaceutical company Samsung BioLogics dropped 3.89 percent to 456,500 won, and steelmaker Posco slipped 3.42 percent to 155,500 won.

Stocks of Airline companies closed in positive territory despite the ongoing slump in the tourism industry. Korean Air Lines added 5.76 percent to close at 18,350 won, and the low-cost carrier Jin Air spiked by 20.24 percent to close at 9,090 won. Asiana Airlines inched up 6.01 percent reaching 3,350 won.

The secondary Kosdaq gained 10.93 points, or 2.16 percent, closing at 516.61.

Stock prices of Seegene, local manufacturer of the coronavirus test kits, hit a record high for the second session in the Kosdaq market, spiking close to the market cap by 29.97 percent amid anticipation among investors over the news that the company’s diagnostic kits will be exported to the United States.

The local currency closed at 1,232.80 won against the U.S. dollar, up 2.9 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed mixed. The yield on three-year bonds shed 8.1 basis points to 1.065 percent, and the return on the benchmark 10-year government bond added 1.3 basis points to reach 0.86 percent.

BY KANG JAE-EUN, YONHAP [kang.jaeeun@joongang.co.kr]