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Turmoil on China markets takes toll on Kospi

Oct 30,2018
Korean shares ended in negative territory for the fifth consecutive session Monday amid declines in the Chinese stock market. The Korean won appreciated against the greenback.

The benchmark Kospi started the session higher reaching as high as 2,045.76, but ended below the 2,000 threshold mark, dropping 31.10 points, or 1.53 percent, compared to the previous trading session to close at 1,996.05.

Trading volume was moderate at 416 million shares worth 6.13 trillion won ($5.4 billion).

“The lack of upside momentum and worse-than-expected third-quarter earnings of major companies such as Amorepacific weighed on the stock market. Moreover, declines in the Chinese stock market were another blow,” said Jeong Dai, an analyst at Meritz Securities.

Foreign investors sold a net 159.5 billion won, and individuals dumped a net 487.7 billion won worth of shares. Institutional investors scooped in a net 636.3 billion won worth of shares to moderate losses.

Despite a decline in the Kospi, market bellwether Samsung Electronics rose 0.98 percent to close at 41,400 won, while No. 2 chipmaker SK Hynix edged down 0.30 percent to 66,800 won.

Carmakers were also mixed as Hyundai Motor declined 1.85 percent to 106,000 won, while sister company Kia Motors gained 0.54 percent to 28,000 won.

Meanwhile, pharmaceutical companies fell as Celltrion dropped 4.39 percent to 218,000 won. Samsung’s biopharmaceutical unit Samsung BioLogics also fell 2.55 percent to 362,500 won.

Portal giant Naver dropped 3.10 percent to 109,500 won, and rival portal operator Kakao fell 3.63 percent to end at 87,600 won.

Gaming companies also suffered losses as NCSoft ended 1.34 percent down to 404,000 won, and Netmarble plunged 8.20 percent to 91,800 won.

The secondary Kosdaq started up but slid during the trading session, to drop 33.37 points, or 5.03 percent, to end at 629.70.

The tech and bio-heavy index was weighed down by individual investors selling and a 2.06 percent drop in the U.S. Nasdaq during Friday’s trading session.

The Korean won closed at 1,141.40 won, down 0.50 won, against the U.S. dollar from the last trading session.

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

The yield on three-year bonds dropped 7.4 basis points to 1.89 percent, and the return on 10-year bonds declined 7.7 basis points to 2.17 percent.

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