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Kospi declines to year low, plummeting 2.57%

Oct 24,2018
Korean stocks fell across the board, with the benchmark index ending at its lowest point this year. The Korean won depreciated against the U.S. dollar.

The Kospi slid during the trading session, ending at 2,106.10, down 55.61 points or 2.57 percent.

Foreign investors offloaded a net 562.4 billion won ($494.4 million) of shares, with institutions selling 99.2 billion won. Individuals scooped up a net 641.3 billion won worth of shares.

Most shares declined.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics fell 1.15 percent to end at 43,050 won, and SK Hynix ended down 1.29 percent to 69,100 won.

Telecommunications companies also retreated. SK Telecom ended down 1.05 percent to 283,000 won, ending four consecutive sessions of gains, and smaller KT and LG U+ each dropped 1.49 percent and 0.83 percent to 29,800 won and 17,900 won.

The country’s top carmaker Hyundai Motor declined 1.27 percent to 116,500 won, and its sister company Kia Motors fell 3.74 percent to 28,350 won.

Top steelmaker Posco also fell 2.06 percent to 261,000 won.

Naver, the country’s top portal, dropped 2.71 percent to close at 125,500 won. Rival portal operator Kakao ended down 1.95 percent to 100,500 won.

KB Financial Group, a leading banking company, fell 2.67 percent to 51,000 won, and Shinhan Financial Group decreased 2.67 percent to 43,800 won.

Oil refiners also lost ground, with industry leader SK Innovation falling 3.27 percent to 207,000 won and S-Oil dropping 3.10 percent to close at 125,000 won.

Top cosmetics producer Amorepacific shed 3.82 percent to end at 189,000 won.

Appliance rental company Coway edged up 0.12 percent closing at 84,300 won. Among the top 50 stocks in the main index by market capitalization, it was the only stock to end in positive territory.

The Kosdaq also ended in negative territory, falling 25.15 points or 3.38 percent, to end at 719.00. The tech and bio-heavy index was weighed down by a 1.43 percent decline in the U.S. Nasdaq biotechnology index overnight.

The Korean won closed at 1,137.60 won against the greenback, up 9.20 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, ended higher.

Three-year bond yields fell 2.0 basis points to end at 1.99 percent, and 10-year bond yields also ended lower, dropping 3.7 basis points to close at 2.31 percent.

BY CHAE YUN-HWAN, YONHAP [chae.yunhwan@joongang.co.kr]