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S. Korean stocks rally on stimulus hopes, foreign buying at 7-year high

All News 16:03 July 28, 2020

SEOUL, May 28 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks rallied by almost 2 percent Tuesday on the back of massive foreign buying with techs and market heavyweights leading the market gain. The Korean won slightly fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) jumped 39.13 points, or 1.76 percent, to close at 2,256.99. Trading volume was high at about 851 million shares worth some 17.2 trillion won (US$14.4 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 495 to 344.

The market continued a bullish run amid massive stimulus efforts in the United States and Europe.

The weak U.S. dollar also led to strong foreign buying in emerging economies, including South Korea.

"A weak U.S. dollar is sparking rebalancing in asset portfolios around the globe," said Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities Co.

Investor sentiment was further boosted by reports that an experimental COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., entered final clinical trials.

A sharp drop in the number of new virus cases in South Korea, as well as a slowdown in daily infections in the U.S., helped buoy the index.

South Korea added 28 new cases Tuesday, up from 25 on Monday but sharply down from a four-month high of 113 on Saturday.

Foreigners bought a net 1.3 trillion won, extending their buying streak to a third consecutive session. The buying spree marks the largest since Sept. 12, 2013, when the comparable figure was 1.43 trillion won.

Institutions sold a net 217 billion won, with retail investors offloading a net 1.1 billion won.

Most large caps traded higher.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics spiked 5.4 percent to 58,600 won on expectations that the company will benefit from the rising tensions between the U.S. and China.

No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix gained 0.36 percent to 83,100 won.

Top pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics advanced 0.93 percent to 761,000 won, and leading chemical maker LG Chem jumped 2.13 percent to 528,000 won.

Internet giant Naver gained 1.23 percent to 288,000 won, and its rival Kakao added 0.92 percent to 329,500 won.

The country's largest automaker, Hyundai Motor, shed 0.4 percent to 123,000 won, while leading steelmaker POSCO surged 3.06 percent to 202,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,196.90 won per dollar, down 0.8 won from the previous session's close.


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