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Seoul: Shares reverse early losses to close at 3-week high; won falls
[SEOUL] Seoul shares reversed early losses to close at a three-week high on Thursday as recently undervalued shares extended gains, while foreigners continuously offloaded local stocks.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) ended up 1.4 per cent at 1,962.11, the strongest since Aug 17.
Shipbuilders outperformed the broad market, closing up 5.9 per cent. Samsung Heavy Industries Co Ltd and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co Ltd climbed 9.6 and 7.5 per cent, respectively. "As Samsung Heavy industries' union workers reached a deal (in talks on wage) today, shares of shipbuilders, who face restructuring, rose on expectations they could 'normalise' their businesses," said Kim Hyun, an analyst at Shinhan Investment Corporation.
Foreigners were net sellers for a 26th consecutive session, marking the longest selling spree in July 2008. During the 26 days, they offloaded 5.3 trillion won (S$6.3 billion) of stocks in the main board, preliminary data showed.
In the currency market, the South Korean won closed local trade down 0.4 per cent to 1,194.4 per dollar, weighed down by persistent foreign selling in the stock market.