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Seoul: Won slips, posts biggest weekly fall in 4 yrs; shares down

South Korean shares reversed sharp early declines to close higher on Thursday while the country's currency pared losses against the dollar as the investor appetite for risk assets regained momentum.

[SEOUL] The South Korean won fell for a fifth consecutive session on Friday to a near three-week low after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said the US central bank is still on track to raise rates this year.

Dealers suspected there were dollar-selling smoothing operations by the authorities early in the session to curb the won's sharp fall.

The won was down 0.2 per cent at 1,194.7 per dollar after touching a near three-week low of 1,198.8 in morning trade. For the week, it lost 2.7 per cent, the sharpest weekly loss since the one ended Sept 23, 2011.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) on Friday ended down 0.2 per cent to 1,942.85 points on persistent foreign selling. For the week, it shed 2.7 per cent.

Foreigners were net sellers for a fifth straight day, offloading 300.7 billion won (S$358.8 million) of shares on the main board, preliminary data showed.