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(LEAD) Seoul stocks snap 4-day winning streak amid U.S.-China trade woes

All News 16:40 June 12, 2019

(ATTN: ADDS bond yields at bottom

SEOUL, June 12 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks closed lower Wednesday, ending a four-day winning streak, amid the continuing uncertainties over the U.S.-China trade war. The Korean won lost ground against the U.S. dollar.

After a choppy session, the benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) shed 3.06 points, or 0.14 percent, to close at 2,108.74. Trade volume was moderate at 686 million shares worth 4.6 trillion won (US$3.9 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 425 to 393.

The local stock market opened slightly higher but soon pared earlier gains as investors remained cautious after U.S. President Trump said he would impose more tariffs on Chinese imports if there is no progress in talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

"Lingering uncertainties surrounding the U.S.-China trade friction weighed on the local stock market," said Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities.

Most large-cap shares ended mixed.

Tech shares closed lower, with top cap Samsung Electronics moving down 0.56 percent to 44,600 won to snap its four-day winning streak. Its smaller rival LG Electronics was down 0.73 percent to 82,000 won, and SK hynix, a global chipmaker, lost 2.23 percent to 65,700 won.

Automakers ended mixed. Industry leader Hyundai Motor dropped 1.74 percent to 141,000 won, while its smaller affiliate Kia Motors remained unchanged at 42,800 won.

In contrast, bio shares closed higher, with Samsung BioLogics, a biopharmaceutical affiliate of Samsung Group, adding 0.33 percent to end at 308,000 won. Major bio firm Celltrion was up 0.99 percent to 204,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,182.6 won against the U.S. dollar, down 2.2 won from the previous session's close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed sharply higher. The yield on three-year Treasurys lost 7.3 basis points to 1.469 percent, and the return on benchmark five-year government bonds was down 7.8 basis points to 1.510 percent.


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