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Kospi beats 2,200, first time since 2011

Apr 27,2017
Seoul’s main bourse surpassed the 2,200 level for the first time in nearly six years amid growing hopes for improved corporate earnings and U.S. tax reform.

The benchmark Kospi closed at 2,207.84, up 10.99 points, or 0.50 percent, from the previous trading day.

On Tuesday, the local bourse also advanced by over 1 percent on extended foreign buying.

Trade volume was moderate at 393 million shares worth 5.23 trillion won ($4.65 billion).

The stock market opened as U.S. stocks skyrocketed on Tuesday on the back of upbeat corporate earnings and proposed mergers.

Foreign investors have scooped up some 1.3 trillion won worth of local stocks for the past five sessions, sending the Kospi higher, as European political risk eased and the U.S. economy showed signs of improvement. On Wednesday alone they bought a net 288 billion won.

U.S. President Donald Trump is also expected to unveil a tax plan later in the day.

“Taking a cue from a bullish run on the U.S. stock market, the local stock market will extend its gain down the road,” said Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities. “Hopes for a global economic recovery are also running high.”

The analyst said a recovery in exports and improved corporate earnings are adding to upward momentum for the local market.

Samsung Electronics, the country’s top market cap, gained 0.23 percent to end at 2,140,000 won on the back of a rosy outlook for the sales of its latest high-end smartphone, the Galaxy S8.

SK Hynix, a major chipmaker, spiked 2.48 percent at 53,700 won paring earlier gains.

POSCO, the top steelmaker, rose 0.18 percent to end at 272,500 won, and SK Innovation, the top refiner in the country, climbed 1.76 percent to end at 173,000 won.

Hyundai Motor, Korea’s No. 1 automaker, soared 4.5 percent at 151,000 won although it reported a 21 percent decline in first-quarter net profit.

The local currency closed at 1,125.10 won against the U.S. dollar, up 0.3 won from the previous session’s close.

BY KIM YOUNG-NAM, YONHAP [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]