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Kospi tumbles as Korean won falls sharply

July 03,2019
Shares again closed lower Tuesday as institutions remained net sellers of large-cap stocks. The won continued its loss and sharply fell against the dollar.

The benchmark Kospi lost 7.72 points, or 0.36 percent, to close at 2,122.02. Trading volume was moderate at 442 million shares worth about 4.03 trillion won ($3.45 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 421 to 390.

Even though the U.S. stock market finished strong overnight, the main bourse started weak and only got above 2,120 thanks to buying by foreign investors later in the day.

Institutions offloaded a net 57.9 billion won worth of shares, while retail investors bought a net 20.8 billion won worth. Foreign investors net purchased shares worth 33.9 billion won.

Large cap shares mostly ended mixed across the board.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics fell 0.75 percent to 46,250 won, but No. 2 chipmaker SK Hynix jumped 2.0 percent to 71,400 won. LG Electronics gained 0.91 percent to 77,400 won.

Auto shares closed mixed. Hyundai Motor sharply fell 2.84 percent to 137,000 won, but its sister company Kia Motors inched up 0.12 percent to 42,950 won. Auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis fell 1.28 percent to 232,000 won.

Telecom companies were among the gainers. Korea’s leading mobile carrier SK Telecom gained 1.36 percent to 260,500 won, and KT rose 0.18 percent to 28,250 won. Their smaller domestic rival LG U+ gained 0.68 percent to 14,800 won.

Leading biopharmaceutical company Celltrion fell 1.44 percent to 205,000 won, yet Samsung BioLogics gained 0.93 percent to 324,000 won. Hanmi Pharmaceutical lost 0.72 percent to 415,000 won.

Netmarble slightly recovered its loss from Monday as it rose 1 percent to 101,500 won. Its industry rival NCSoft, however, fell 1.92 percent to 459,000 won.

Posco fell 1.79 percent to 247,500 won, while Kakao advanced 1.54 percent to 131,500 won.

The secondary Kosdaq gained 0.25 points, or 0.04 percent, to close at 696.25. The index finished higher as tech shares remained strong.

The local currency continued to lose ground to close at 1,166.0 won against the dollar, up 7.2 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, ended higher. The yield on three-year bonds fell 1.6 basis points to 1.463 percent, and the return on 10-year bonds lost 2.2 basis points to 1.586 percent.

BY KO JUN-TAE [ko.juntae@joongang.co.kr]