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Exports and oil help to push Seoul stocks up

Dec 05,2017
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Seoul’s main index advanced on Monday after three consecutive days of retreat as foreign and institutional investors purchased local stocks worth more than 230 billion won ($211 million) combined. The benchmark Kospi rose 26.26 points, or 1.06 percent, to close at 2,501.67. Trade volume was moderate at 320 million shares worth 5.93 trillion won.

The rally on Monday came against the backdrop of the U.S. Senate’s narrow passage of a tax haul on Saturday local time, taking the Trump White House and the Republican-controlled Congress a step closer to their objective of cutting taxes on corporations and the wealthy.

Analysts also attribute the rally to strong exports and the growing price of oil.

The Korean won fell against the U.S. dollar.

The Kospi rose 26.26 points, or 1.06 percent, to close at 2,501.67. Trade volume was moderate at 320 million shares worth 5.93 trillion won.

The local stock market opened higher as institutional investors remained net buyers.

Investor sentiment was also buoyed by news that the U.S. Senate passed a tax-cut bill.

Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities, said semiconductor stocks rebounded over expectations that worldwide semiconductor sales will remain strong by the end of this year.

The U.S. Senate’s passage of tax-cut legislation also had positive effects on the local stock market, the analyst said.

Samsung Electronics rose 0.98 percent to end at 2,567,000 won, and SK Hynix, a global chipmaker, jumped 2.2 percent to 79,100 won.

Naver, the operator of Korea’s top Internet portal, climbed 0.96 percent to 839,000 won. Kakao, the operator of the smartphone chat app Kakao Talk, slipped 0.36 percent to 139,500 won.

Automakers traded in negative terrain, with industry leader Hyundai Motor down 0.62 percent to 160,500 won, and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors edging down 0.15 percent at 33,100 won.

The local currency closed at 1,088.70 won against the U.S. dollar, down 2.3 won from the previous session’s close.

The secondary Kosdaq slipped 0.67 percent to close at 782.45 as institutional and foreign investors sold stocks worth more than 80 billion won.

Bond prices had a mixed day. The yield on three-year bonds gained 0.2 basis point to 2.083 percent, and the return on the benchmark five-year government bond fell 0.5 basis point to 2.270 percent.

BY KANG JIN-KYU, YONHAP [kang.jinkyu@joongang.co.kr]