The Business Times

Seoul: Stocks fall for fourth day as virus fears dent sentiment

Published Wed, Jul 21, 2021 · 03:08 PM

[SEOUL] South Korean shares ended lower for a fourth straight session on Wednesday, as concerns that spiking coronavirus cases could impede global economic recovery outweighed positive sentiment from upbeat trade data. The won weakened, while the benchmark bond yield also fell.

The benchmark Kospi closed down 16.79 points or 0.52 per cent at 3,215.91.

The Delta variant of the coronavirus has for the moment displaced inflation as investors' primary source of concern, with South Korea on Wednesday reporting a daily record of new infections.

Among the heavyweights, chip giants Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix fell 0.63 per cent and 1.27 per cent, respectively, while internet giant Naver and LG Chem dropped 2.51 per cent and 0.61 per cent.

Foreigners were net sellers of 519.7 billion won (S$615.9 million) worth of shares on the main board.

South Korea's exports in the first 20 days of July jumped 32.8 per cent to US$32.58 billion from a year earlier, according to the customs agency data, but that failed to offset virus fears.

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The won ended at 1,154.0 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.31 per cent lower than its previous close at 1,150.4.

In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,153.7 per dollar, down 0.5 per cent from the previous day, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,154.1.

In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.11 point to 110.30.

The most liquid three-year Korean treasury bond yield fell by 2.2 basis points to 1.386 per cent, while the benchmark 10-year yield fell by 1.3 basis points to 1.878 per cent.

REUTERS

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