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Seoul stocks extend losing streak to 4th day

Sept 23,2017
Seoul’s main bourse closed lower Friday, extending its losing streak to a fourth day amid rising tensions between North Korea and the United States, analysts said.

The Kospi shed 17.79 points, or 0.74 percent, from the previous session, to close at 2,388.71.

The local bourse opened nearly flat, taking a cue from overnight losses on Wall Street, but was hurled into negative terrain following a media report from North Korea that its leader Kim Jong-un is considering the strongest actions in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s latest U.N. speech.

“A series of market-moving events scheduled during the upcoming Chuseok holiday also added uncertainties to the market,” said analyst Seo Sang-young at Kiwoom Securities.

Institutions dumped a net 114 billion won ($100 million) worth of local stocks, while individuals and foreigners scooped up a net 43.3 billion won and 29.5 billion won, respectively.

Market heavyweights traded mixed with steelmakers and chemicals producers leading the market loss.

Bellwether Samsung Electronics gained 0.38 percent to end at a new fresh record high of 2,650,000 won. SK Hynix, a major chipmaker with second largest market cap, closed unchanged at 83,100 won.

Steel shares plunged following a media report that the United States has decided to impose heavy tariffs on Korean steel products. Posco, the country’s No. 1 steelmaker, shed 3.16 percent to 306,500 won, while Hyundai Steel lost 1.89 percent to end at 52,000 won.

Heavy losses in chemical shares also weighed on the local bourse, with industry leader LG Chem nose-diving 5.14 percent to end at 369,000 won. Leading cosmetics company AmorePacific was down 2.01 percent to 244,000 won.

Hyundai Motor gained 0.35 percent to close at 142,000 won, while its smaller affiliate Kia Motors fell 0.65 percent to 30,400 won.

The secondary Kosdaq closed at 648.95, down 12.16 points, or 1.84 percent from the previous session on Friday. Most top-enlisted companies by market cap saw stock prices decline.

Celltrion shed 1.64 percent to 143,600 won, along with Medytox which slipped 0.83 percent to 561,600 won. CJ E&M remained unchanged at 78,500 won.

The Korean won weakened 0.3 percent from the previous session to 1136.5 against the dollar.

The three-year government bond yield fell one basis point to 1.78 percent while the 10-year yield also went down one basis point to 2.27 percent.

BY SONG KYOUNG-SON, YONHAP [song.kyoungson@joongang.co.kr]