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Local stocks inch down on profit-taking

May 11,2017
Seoul’s main bourse fell for the first time in four trading days as investors went for profit-taking from recent gains, particularly retail investors. Most of the top stocks by market capitalization saw their share values drop.

The benchmark Kospi closed at 2,270.12, down 22.64 points, or 0.99 percent, from the prior trading day. Trading volume was at its highest since December 2011 at record 9.2 trillion won ($8.1 billion).

Foreign investors bought 107.2 billion won in shares. Retail investors, on the other hand, sold 100.9 billion won in stock and institutional investors offloaded 39.1 billion won worth.

The Kospi index jumped more than 2 percent on Monday to set its highest-ever close of 2,292.76. The local stock market was closed Tuesday due to the presidential election.

“The local stock market appears to have been overheated, compared with recent performances at currency and bond markets,” Park Hyung-joong, head of marketing strategy division at Daishin Securities, said.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics slipped 3.02 percent to end at 2,280,000 won, and global chipmaker SK Hynix slipped 2.28 percent to 55,600 won.

Naver, operator of the top Internet portal, shed 2.49 percent at 824,000 won.

Top carmaker Hyundai Motor fell 0.95 percent to 156,500 won, while smaller affiliate Kia Motors rose 0.98 percent at 36,100 won.

Korea Electric Power Corporation lost 5.79 percent to 43,150 won, while AmorePacific rose 3.45 percent to 344,500 won. Tobacco company KT&G saw its shares rise 1.9 percent to close at 107,500 won and BGF Retail gained 5.73 percent to 120,000 won.

The secondary Kosdaq closed at 642.68, down 0.71 points, or 0.11 percent, from the previous trading day.

Celltrion rose 1.79 percent to 96,500 won, while Kakao dropped 1.05 percent to 94,000 won. CJ E&M fell 0.24 percent to 84,600 won.

The local currency closed at 1,135.80 won against the U.S. dollar, down 4.4 won from the previous session’s close.

The three-year government bond yields rose three basis points to 1.73 percent and the 10-year figure rose six basis points to 2.3 percent.

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