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Seoul: Shares rise on US stimulus hopes, log best weekly gain in six

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South Korean shares on Friday notched their best weekly gain in six as hopes of more US stimulus measures boosted sentiment even as resurgence in Covid-19 cases cloud growth outlook.

[SEOUL] South Korean shares on Friday notched their best weekly gain in six as hopes of more US stimulus measures boosted sentiment even as resurgence in Covid-19 cases cloud growth outlook.

The Korean won strengthened, while the benchmark bond yield fell.

As of 6.30am GMT (2.30pm SGT), the Seoul stock market's main Kospi ended up 17.43 points or 0.8 per cent at 2,201.19. For the week, the Kospi gained 2.37 per cent, logging the best weekly gain in six.

US Congress is set to begin debating a relief package next week amid fresh lockdown measures in several states.

Foreigners are buying, as earnings growth at IT companies as well as better outlook for carmakers have improved sentiment, says Chang Hee-jong, an analyst at HI Investment & Securities.

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Foreigners were net buyers of 108.80 billion (S$125.7 million) won worth of shares on the main board.

The won was quoted at 1,205.1 per US dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.04 per cent higher than its previous close at 1,205.6.

In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,205.3 per US dollar, while in non-deliverable forward trading the won's one-month contract was quoted at 1,204.8 per US dollar. 

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.59 per cent, after the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.34 per cent. Japanese stocks fell 0.32 per cent.

The Kospi climbed 0.16 per cent so far this year and gained 1.5 per cent in the previous 30 trading sessions.

The trading volume during the session in the Kospi index was 560.98 million shares. Of the total traded issues of 901, the number of advancing shares was 481.

The won weakened 4 per cent against the dollar so far this year.

In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.08 points to 112.18.

The most liquid three-year Korean treasury bond yield fell by 1.9 basis points to 0.813 per cent in late afternoon trade, while the benchmark 10-year yield dropped 3.5 basis points to 1.347 per cent.

REUTERS

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