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(LEAD) Seoul shares recover to 2,000-point level

All News 17:18 January 04, 2019

(ATTN: ADDS bond yields at bottom; CHANGES photo)

SEOUL, Jan. 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks made a comeback to regain the 2,000-point level Friday as investors sought undervalued shares. The local currency gained ground against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) added 16.55 points, or 0.83 percent, to 2,010.25. It finished over 2,000 points just a day after closing at a more-than-two-year low of 1,993.70 on Thursday.

Trading volume was moderate at 403.3 million shares, worth 5.4 billion won (US$4.8 billion), with winners beating losers 461 to 370.

Institutions led the rise, scooping up a net 223 billion won worth of local shares, offsetting a net 123.1 billion won and 101.6 billion won selling by foreign and individual investors, respectively.

"The U.S. stock market was swept by growth concerns, sparked by Apple's downgraded earnings forecast," said Lee Young-gon from Hana Financial Investment Co. "The KOSPI already experienced a plunge both on Wednesday and Thursday. Now investors have moved to buy cheaper shares."

Carmakers were among the biggest winners on a strong U.S. sales report, with Hyundai Motor rising 2.58 percent to 119,500 won and Kia Motors jumping 6.09 percent to 34,850 won.

CJ Cheiljedang, the top food maker, rose 4.27 percent to 342,000 won, and Orion, a leading confectioner, gained 2.97 percent to 121,500 won.

But tech giant Samsung Electronics edged down 0.4 percent to 37,450 won, and LG Electronics lost 1.11 percent to 62,200 won.

Leading retailer Lotte Shopping slid 0.5 percent to 201,000 won, and its rival Shinsegae dipped 0.62 percent to 239,500 won.

The South Korean won traded at 1,124.5 won against the U.S. greenback, up 3.2 won from the previous session's close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, were mixed. The yield on three-year Treasurys edged up 0.1 basis point to 1.797 percent, and the return on benchmark five-year government bonds dipped 0.3 basis point to 1.866 percent.

(LEAD) Seoul shares recover to 2,000-point level - 1


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