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Summit optimism gives Seoul stocks a boost

Feb 28,2019
Korean stocks closed higher Wednesday as investors grew confident over the outcome of the second summit between Washington and Pyongyang, analysts said. The local currency fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Kospi moved up 8.19 points, or 0.37 percent, to 2,234.79. Trading volume was light at 296 million shares worth 4.82 trillion won ($4.3 billion).

Analysts said Seoul shares closed higher as investors were confident over the outcome of the second summit between the United States and North Korea, which took place in Hanoi, Vietnam, Wednesday evening.

Lee Won, a researcher at Bookook Securities, said yesterday’s summit was not a risk to the market due to the high expectation for an improved result compared to the first summit held last year in Singapore.

Foreigners offloaded a net 58 billion won, and individuals sold a net 111 billion won. Institutions bought a net 152 billion won.

Carmakers closed sharply higher after affiliates of Hyundai Motor Group announced they will expand efforts to boost the interests of shareholders. Hyundai Motor advanced 5.31 percent to 129,000 won, and its auto parts affiliate Hyundai Mobis added 3.76 percent to 221,000 won. Hyundai Motor’s sister company Kia Motors rose 1.51 percent to 36,950 won.

Defense firms also gained ground on reports that South Korea and the United Arab Emirates may discuss expanding ties in the area, with Korea Aerospace Industries rising 2.31 percent to 37,650 won and Hanwha Aerospace rising 1.36 percent to 33,650 won. LIG Nex1 gained 6.7 percent to 40,600 won.

Top tech giant Samsung Electronics closed unchanged from the previous session at 46,750 won, while No. 2 chipmaker SK Hynix fell 1.99 percent to 73,700 won. LG Electronics advanced 2.41 percent to 72,200 won.

Steelmakers lost ground, with Posco moving down 2.74 percent to 266,000 won and Korea Zinc sliding 0.54 percent to 464,500 won. Hyundai Steel decreased 0.58 percent to 51,000 won.

The secondary Kosdaq added 5.07 points, or 0.68 percent, to end the session at 752.16.

The tech heavy index advanced from the inflow of foreign capital invested on pharmaceutical businesses.

The Korean won finished at 1,119.10 won against the dollar, up 0.5 won from the previous day’s close.

Bond prices ended lower. The yield on three-year bonds rose 0.8 basis points to 1.80 percent, and the yield on 10-year-bonds rose 1.8 basis points to 1.99 percent.

BY JIN MIN-JI, YONHAP [jin.minji@joongang.co.kr]