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Talk of Trump impeachment ends Kospi streak

Sept 26,2019
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Stocks dropped by more than 1 percent on Wednesday, ending a run of thirteen consecutive gains amid escalating woes over a potential impeachment investigation into U.S. President Donald Trump. The Korean won fell against the dollar.

The benchmark Kospi dropped 27.65 points, or 1.32 percent, to close at 2,073.39. Trade volume was moderate at 640 million shares worth 5.1 trillion won ($4.3 billion), with losers far outnumbering gainers 757 to 108.

The local stock market opened lower, taking a cue from overnight losses on Wall Street. U.S. stocks closed lower as investors digested weaker than expected economic data and U.S. lawmakers launched an impeachment inquiry into Trump.

The market further extended losses in afternoon trading as foreign investors staged a selling binge of major tech and chemical shares.

Foreigners unloaded a net 366 billion won of local stocks, while institutional and retail investors scooped up a combined 351 billion won.

“The issue of Trump’s impeachment weighed down on our stock market,” Seo Sang-young, a researcher at Kiwoom Securities, said. “Investors attempted to cash in recent gains amid growing political uncertainties in the United States.”

Most large-cap shares on the Seoul bourse were bearish. Samsung Electronics fell 1.21 percent to 48,900 won. SK Hynix, a major chipmaker, shed 1.8 percent to end at 81,900 won.

Shares of LG Chem dropped 6.73 percent to 305,000 won after analysts forecast poor earnings for the third quarter.

Pharmaceutical firms also ended in negative terrain, with Celltrion losing 1.19 percent to reach 166,500 won. Samsung BioLogics inched down 0.16 percent to 318,000 won. Hanmi Pharmaceuticals slipped 1.91 percent at 282,000 won.

Auto shares were mixed, Hyundai Motor rose 0.37 percent at 134,500 won. Kia Motors edged down 0.43 percent at 45,850. Auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis dropped 1.73 percent at 255,000 won.

Financial stocks were mixed. Shinhan Financial, a major banking group, rose 0.35 percent at 42,800 won and KB Financial fell 1.14 percent at 43,500 won.

The secondary Kosdaq slipped 15.09 points, or 2.35 percent, to close at 626.76.

The local currency closed at 1,198.8 won against dollar, up 3.1 won from the previous session’s close.

Bond prices were mixed. The yield on three-year bonds lost 2.1 basis points to 1.305 percent, and the yield on 10-year bonds dropped 7.7 basis points to 1.64 percent.

BY KIM BYUNG-WOOK, YONHAP [kim.byungwook@joongang.co.kr]