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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:22 August 05, 2019

The following is the second summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Monday.

(3rd LD) Korean won sinks to over 3-yr low amid escalating trade tensions

SEOUL -- The South Korean won traded at a more than three-year low against the U.S. dollar on Monday on concerns that the escalating trade row between the United States and China, and more recently South Korea's own conflict with Japan, could further cast a pall on its economy.

The won closed at 1,215.3 won against the greenback, plunging 17.3 won from the previous session's close and breaching the psychologically significant level of 1,200 won.

(LEAD) Trade spats send KOSPI dipping to 3-year low, Korean won sharply sliding

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks plunged to a three-year low on Monday and its currency dipped to a more than three-year low against the U.S. dollar as investors dumped market heavyweights in the face of the escalating trade row between the United States and China.

Bond yields also plummeted to record lows as investors sought safer assets, such as dollars, amid risk-off sentiment.

(LEAD) Bourse operator halts program trading as Kosdaq plunges

SEOUL -- Program trading of shares listed on South Korea's secondary Kosdaq market was briefly halted Monday as the market's index plunged over global trade disputes, the bourse's operator said.

Program trading was halted for five minutes starting at 2:09 p.m. after the Kosdaq index slipped more than 6 percent, the Korea Exchange said in a statement.

(LEAD) (News Focus) Korea won set to lose further ground amid trade tensions, Fed concerns

SEOUL -- In the face of the escalating American-Sino trade war, its own trade feud with Japan and its worsening economic conditions, South Korea's currency is set to further slide in the coming weeks, probably touching the 1,250-won threshold.

The Korean won closed at 1,215.30 won against the greenback, plunging 17.3 won from the previous session's close and dipping to the lowest level since March 9, 2016, when the rate stood at 1,216.20 won.

(2nd LD) S. Korea to spend 7.8 tln won for stable supply of 100 key strategic items

SEOUL -- South Korea said Monday it will spend 7.8 trillion won (US$6.47 billion) over the next five years to nurture its materials, parts and equipment sectors and trim its dependence on Japanese imports in the latest move to cope with the neighbor's economic retaliation.

The move to boost R&D for the sector came after Japan decided last week to remove South Korea from a list of countries subject to preferential trade status in apparent anger against last year's South Korean Supreme Court rulings ordering Japanese firms to compensate South Korean victims of forced labor.

(LEAD) S. Korea, U.S. kick off combined military exercise despite N.K. warnings

SEOUL -- South Korea and the United States began a joint military exercise as scheduled Monday, sources said, even though North Korea has strongly complained against the maneuvers and rattled its sabers with a series of missile launches.

The "crisis management staff training" kicked off earlier in the day as a preliminary session in the runup to the command post exercise (CPX) aimed at strengthening the allies' combined posture and capabilities to cope with contingencies on the Korean Peninsula, according to the sources.

(2nd LD) No discussions on U.S. missile deployment in S. Korea: ministry

SEOUL -- South Korea has had no discussions with the United States on the possible deployment of U.S. intermediate-range missiles on its soil, nor does it plan to do so, the defense ministry said Monday.

Some media outlets have speculated that South Korea could be one of candidate sites for U.S. missiles, after Washington pledged to deploy them in Asia and elsewhere to maintain deterrence after withdrawing from an anti-missile treaty with Russia.

Widening boycott of Japanese goods seeps into culture sector

SEOUL -- A growing consumer boycott of Japanese goods stemming from an accelerating trade war between the neighbors has also seeped into the cultural front, with many Japanese films and books coming under the shadow of the consumer campaign.

In protest of Japan's initial retaliatory imposition of export curbs on three essential high-tech materials to South Korea a month earlier, South Korean consumers moved to boycott Japanese products and tours to the country.

Samsung executives discuss emergency measures to reduce Japan risk

SEOUL -- Top executives of Samsung Electronics Co. and its affiliates held an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss measures to guard against risks related to Japan's tighter export regulations, company officials said.

Lee Jae-yong, the de-facto leader of the South Korean tech giant, convened the gathering with chiefs of semiconductor and display divisions, as well as CEOs of its affiliates, including electronics component maker Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co. and battery-making unit Samsung SDI Co., a company official said.

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