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Seoul: Shares dip slightly after China factory data; won edges up


[SEOUL] Seoul shares edged down on Thursday morning after lukewarm China factory data, while investors awaited the South Korean central bank's policy decision on interest rates that will be announced later in the day.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was down 0.1 per cent at 1,994.60 points as of 0126 GMT.

The South Korean won was up 0.3 per cent at 1,151.5 against the dollar.

Data released on Wednesday showed China's October industrial production growth cooled to 5.6 per cent year-to-year, slightly lower than the 5.8 per cent forecast by a Reuters poll. Retail sales jumped 11 per cent from a year ago, just ahead of expectations of a 10.9 per cent increase.

Market voices on:

"Weak Chinese factory data may negatively affect emerging market equities as market participants grow anxious over the future prospects of the global economy," said Kim Yong-goo, an analyst at Samsung Securities.

Shares of KAKAO Corp, the operator of South Korea's largest mobile messaging app, rose 4.3 per cent despite announcing a lower-than-expected operating profit of 16 billion won for the third quarter.

Foreign investors sold a net 75.3 billion Korean won worth of KOSPI shares near mid-session, weighing on the index.

December futures on three-year treasury bonds shed 0.03 points at 109.07.