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Seoul stocks rise on tech, auto gains

All Headlines 15:58 October 04, 2016

SEOUL, Oct. 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks closed higher on Tuesday as foreign investors scooped up market heavyweights, such as autos and tech shares. The Korean won fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) added 11.23 points, or 0.55 percent, to close at 2,054.86. Trade volume was slim at 314.79 million shares worth 4.83 trillion won (US$4.36 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 505 to 300.

Analysts said an upbeat U.S. manufacturing survey eased concerns about the health of the world's largest economy and bolstered the dollar, which helped lift sentiment among foreign investors.

"The strong dollar is expected to help more cash flows into emerging markets, including the South Korean market," Bae Sung-young, an analyst at Hyundai Securities, said. "As major companies are set to report their third-quarter earnings in the coming weeks, investors will shift their attention to earnings prospects."

Foreigners bought a net 179.69 billion won, while institutions and retail investors offloaded a net 89.91 billion and 89.82 billion won, respectively.

Tech shares advanced ahead of the third-quarter earnings season.

Top market cap Samsung Electronics rose 1 percent to 1,614,000 won as the tech giant was set to release its third-quarter earnings guidance on Thursday, and SK hynix, the world's second-largest chipmaker, increased 3.98 percent to 41,800 won.

Auto shares were in the positive terrain.

Leading automaker Hyundai Motor surged 2.58 percent to 139,000 won, and its sister company Kia Motors edged up 0.36 percent to 42,300 won.

In contrast, bio stocks dropped sharply following heavy losses in the previous session.

Hanmi Pharmaceutical, the No. 1 player in the sector, tumbled 7.28 percent to 471,000 won after on Friday it announced that its license for a lung cancer treatment with German drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim ended. Its holding firm Hanmi Science also plummeted 8.33 percent to 104,500 won.

The local currency closed at 1,107.8 won against the U.S. dollar, down 6.5 won from the previous session's close.

ejkim@yna.co.kr
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