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S. Korean retail investors log big returns on stocks

All News 08:50 June 08, 2020

SEOUL, June 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korean retail investors have posted big gains from their stock investments in recent months amid a market recovery from the coronavirus shock, data showed Monday.

The average return of their 10 most-bought stocks, including top-cap Samsung Electronics Co., came to 66.5 percent between March 19 and Friday, according to the data from the Korea Exchange.

Semiconductor behemoth SK hynix Inc. was the best performer among individual investors, with its share price soaring 2.4 times to 257,000 won (US$213) over the cited period.

Shares in Samsung SDI Co., a South Korean manufacturer of electric vehicle and smartphone batteries, more than doubled to 371,500 won.

Driven by hopes for growth of contact-free industries, internet portal giant Kakao soared nearly 87 percent and industry leader Naver jumped roughly 60 percent.

S. Korean retail investors log big returns on stocks - 1

Retail investors posted an investment return of about 29 percent from their investment in Samsung Electronics, of which their net buying neared 1 trillion won over the cited period.

Despite foreign investors' exit from Asia's fourth-largest economy, individual investors have been loading up on shares, bolstering up the floundering local stock market.

Retail investors bought a net 7.7 trillion won worth of local stocks between March 20 and Friday, with their cumulative net purchases this year reaching 25.7 trillion won.

South Korean share prices suffered historic falls in March amid escalating worries about a global economic recession due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, with the benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) tumbling to a near 11-year low of the 1,450-point range.

But the local stock market has been gathering momentum sharply in recent weeks amid expectations for the reopening of economies. The index jumped 1.43 percent to close at 2,181.87 on Friday, reaching the highest point since Feb. 20.

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