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Seoul: Won, stocks pressured by Fed officials' hawkish tone

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[SEOUL] The South Korean won and stocks fell on Thursday morning as several US Federal Reserve officials took a hawkish stance on future monetary policy, strengthening the dollar globally.

The won stood at 1,167.9 per dollar down 0.6 per cent as of 0155 GMT compared to Wednesday's onshore close at 1,161.2.

"The dollar seems to be rallying as Fed officials' recent statements raise investors' expectations of a rate hike next month," said Kim Moon-il, a foreign exchange analyst at Eugene Futures.

Kim also added that the fall in global oil prices was also driving the won down.

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The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was down 0.4 per cent at 1,986.68 points.

Trading volume was low overall early on Thursday.

Foreign investors were set to snap their 10-day buying spree, offloading a net 21.2 billion Korean won (S$24.84 million) worth of KOSPI shares near mid-session.

Major steelmakers underperformed, bringing down the sub-index by 2.4 per cent. Posco was down 3.0 per cent.

Chip maker SK Hynix dropped 2.5 per cent.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers 518 to 268.

June futures on three-year treasury bonds gained 0.04 point to 110.18.

REUTERS

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