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Seoul: Stocks climb as domestic institutions buy; won firms

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South Korea's KOSPI stock index rose on Monday on heavy purchases from local institutions. The South Korean won firmed on the local platform, while bond yields also rose. At 0630 GMT, the KOSPI closed up 14.50 points or 0.60 per cent at 2,444.08.

[SEOUL] South Korea's KOSPI stock index rose on Monday on heavy purchases from local institutions. The South Korean won firmed on the local platform, while bond yields also rose. At 0630 GMT, the KOSPI closed up 14.50 points or 0.60 per cent at 2,444.08.

The KOSPI's gains were mainly driven by biotechnology stocks such as Celltrion up 4.8 per cent and Samsung Biologics up over 8 per cent.

The won was quoted at 1,067.1 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.23 per cent firmer than its previous close at 1,069.6. In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,065.61 per US dollar, up 0.39 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it fetched 1,050.85 per dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.71 per cent, after US stocks ended the previous session with losses. Japanese stocks rose 0.51 per cent.

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The KOSPI is down around 1.5 per cent so far this year, and up by 0.63 per cent in the previous 30 days. The current price-to-earnings ratio is 12.10, the dividend yield is 1.28 per cent and the market capitalisation is 1,242.04 trillion won. The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index was 330,877,000 shares, and of the total traded issues of 888, the number of advancing shares was 365.

Foreigners were net sellers of 59,074 million won worth of shares. The US dollar has fallen 0.07 per cent against the won this year. The won's high for the year is 1,053.55 per dollar on Apr 2, 2018 and low is 1,098.4 on Feb 6 2018.

In money and debt markets, June futures on three-year treasury bonds fell 0.01 points to 107.89.

The South Korean three-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was quoted at 1.65 per cent, while the benchmark three-year Korean treasury bond yielded 2.166 per cent, higher than the previous day's 2.16 per cent.

REUTERS