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Seoul: Stocks hit 3-week closing low on growing China tensions; won slides
[SEOUL] South Korean shares hit a near three-week closing low on Friday as investors turned anxious after reports China had ordered tour operators to stop selling trips to Seoul amid rising tensions over the deployment of a US missile-defence system.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) closed 1.1 per cent lower at 2,078.75 points, its lowest since Feb 14.
For the week, the index declined 0.7 per cent, the biggest weekly fall in 17 weeks.
The South Korean won also slid to its lowest closing level in more than four weeks, as probability grew of a rate increase by the US Federal Reserve in March, pushing the US dollar higher in the global market.
The won was quoted at 1,156.1 to the US dollar at the conclusion of onshore trade, its lowest since Feb 1. It fell 1.3 per cent compared with Thursday's close of 1,141.6.
The local currency lost 2.2 per cent on a weekly basis, posting its biggest weekly loss since early Jan 2016.