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Seoul: Shares close over 5% lower as virus-driven shutdowns rise

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The benchmark KOSPI closed down 80.10 points, or 5.11 per cent, at 1,486.05, having fallen as much as 6.9 per cent in early trade.

[SEOUL] South Korean shares fell more than 5 per cent on Monday as a rising number of coronavirus-driven shutdowns across the globe fanned fears of a deep recession, eclipsing policy efforts to stabilise markets. 

The benchmark KOSPI closed down 80.10 points, or 5.11 per cent, at 1,486.05, having fallen as much as 6.9 per cent in early trade. The index has lost 32.38 per cent so far this year.

The Korea Exchange said sidecar limits were triggered on the benchmark index and the junior KOSDAQ index to halt programme trading for 5 minutes.

South Korea's central bank said on Monday it will conduct repo operations of 14-day or 28-day maturities on Tuesday to ensure financial institutions have access to short-term credit as the coronavirus causes chaos in global financial markets.

The South Korean government will make an all-out effort to prevent market volatility from turning into a credit crunch, the vice finance minister said.

REUTERS

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