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Seoul: Stocks edge up, Korean won muted; BOK holds rates steady

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[SEOUL] South Korea's Kospi stock index edged higher on Thursday. The Korean won held steady, while bond yields were unchanged.

The Bank of Korea kept its benchmark interest rates unchanged at 1.5 per cent as expected, largely shrugged off by market players.

At 01.04GMT, the Kospi was up 6.55 points, or 0.27 per cent, at 2,450.77.

The won was quoted at 1,065.8 per US dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.05 per cent firmer than its previous close at 1,066.3.

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In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,066.2 per US dollar, down 0.04 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it was being transacted at 1,050.1 per US dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.13 per cent, after US stocks ended the previous session with losses. Japanese stocks rose 0.04 per cent.

The Kospi is down around 0.9 per cent so far this year, and down by 0.49 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 133,358,000 shares, and of the total traded issues of 880, the number of advancing shares was 415.

Foreigners were net buyers of 52,182 million won worth of shares.

The US dollar has fallen 0.05 per cent against the won this year. The won's high for the year is 1,053.55 per US 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 0.02 points to 107.9.

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 2.167 per cent, barely changed from the previous day's 2.17 per cent.

REUTERS