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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 April 13, 2017

The following is the first summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Thursday.

(LEAD) N. Korea continues activity at its nuke test site: satellite photo

SEOUL -- Satellite imagery shows continued activity at North Korea's nuclear test site in its northeastern mountainous area, U.S. researchers monitoring the secretive nation said Thursday.

Commercial satellite imagery, taken on April 12, of the Punggye-ri region shows "continued activity around the North Portal, new activity in the Main Administrative Area, and a few personnel around the site's Command Center," they said in a report posted on the 38 North website.

(2nd LD) U.S. will not bypass Seoul when dealing with N. Korea: FM

SEOUL -- The United States will first consult with South Korea before taking any serious measures, including a pre-emptive strike, against North Korea to punish the communist state for possible provocations, Seoul's top diplomat said Thursday.

Yun Byung-se refused to speculate whether Washington was preparing to pre-emptively strike following additional provocations from the communist North but insisted the U.S. will not take such measures without first consulting with Seoul.

(3rd LD) BOK holds key rate steady at 1.25 pct in April

SEOUL -- South Korea's central bank on Thursday held its key rate steady for April to support the country's growth as it revised up the country's growth forecast for this year.

The Bank of Korea kept its policy rate at an all-time low of 1.25 percent for the 10th consecutive month in April after dropping the rate to its lowest level to bolster Asia's fourth-biggest economy.

BOK raises growth outlook of S. Korea's economy to 2.6 pct

SEOUL -- South Korea's central bank on Thursday revised up its growth outlook for Asia's fourth-largest economy to 2.6 percent from 2.5 percent for 2017.

BOK Gov. Lee Ju-yeol announced the estimate in a news conference after the BOK Monetary Policy Board kept its policy rate at an all-time low of 1.25 percent in April.

(LEAD) Daewoo Shipbuilding chief confident of turnaround in Q1

SEOUL -- Troubled Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. is surely to have logged a profit in the first quarter of the year, and will also report good business results during the remainder of the year, its chief said Thursday, urging bondholders to approve a debt rescheduling scheme for the world's largest shipyard by order backlog.

Jung Sung-leep, president of Daewoo Shipbuilding, also said the shipbuilder's liquidity crisis would not happen again if the latest debt rescheduling is implemented as proposed.

(2nd LD) Preorders for Galaxy S8 greater than expected: Samsung's mobile chief

SEOUL -- Consumer response for Samsung Electronics Co.'s latest high-end smartphone, the Galaxy S8, has been better than expected, the company's mobile division chief said Thursday, with preorders for the flagship device surpassing a whopping 720,000 units in just seven days in South Korea, heralding a major hit for the company.

"Initial market response (for the Galaxy S8) is better than expected," Koh Dong-jin, president of Samsung's mobile communications business, said at a media briefing. "I think the Galaxy S8 will be the first device to regain customers' trust and love," he said.

One-member households to become main family type in 2045

SEJONG -- One-member households are projected to increase sharply over the next few decades as rapid demographic changes speed up a trend toward smaller family units, a government report showed Thursday.

Households consisting of a single member will reach 8.1 million in 2045, accounting for 36.3 percent of the total families in 2045, up from 27.2 percent tallied in 2015, according to the report by Statistics Korea. The forecast is based on the 2015 census, added the statistics agency.

(LEAD) Cardinals' Oh Seung-hwan tosses 1st scoreless outing of season

SEOUL -- St. Louis Cardinals' closer Oh Seung-hwan has finally tossed his first scoreless outing of the season.

Oh threw one shutout inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park in Washington on Wednesday (local time), as the Cardinals won the game 6-1.

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