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Seoul: Stocks edge lower; won falls

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[SEOUL] South Korea's KOSPI stock index slipped on Wednesday. The South Korean won fell against the dollar on the local platform as the dollar strengthened across the board, while bond yields rose. At 0630 GMT, the KOSPI closed down 9.77 points or 0.39 per cent at 2,505.61.

 Shares in Samsung BioLogics Co Ltd ended down 17.2 per cent, losing almost US$6 billion in value, after South Korea's financial watchdog provisionally decided it had breached an accounting rule. Hyundai Mobis Co Ltd said on Wednesday it planned to buy back and cancel its treasury shares worth 187.5 billion Korean won. The company's shares lost 1.8 per cent on the day. 

The won was quoted at 1,076.1 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.75 per cent weaker than its previous close at 1,068. In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,075.31 per US dollar, down 0.26 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it fetched 1,058.6 per dollar. 

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.20 per cent, after US stocks ended the previous session with mild gains. Japanese stocks weakened 0.16 per cent. The KOSPI is up around 1.9 per cent so far this year, and up by 1.63 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.

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The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index was 790,300,000 shares and, of the total traded issues of 878, the number of advancing shares was 497. Foreigners were net sellers of 168,522 million won worth of shares. The US dollar has risen 0.84 per cent against the won this year. The won's high for the year is 1,053.55 per dollar on April 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 0.09 points to 107.64. The Korean three-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was quoted at 1.65 per cent, while the benchmark three-year Korean treasury bond yielded 2.245 per cent, higher than the previous day's 2.22 per cent.

REUTERS