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Seoul: Stocks edge up to close at new high on foreign buying spree

[SEOUL] South Korean shares ended at a new high on Monday as foreign investors beefed up their stock portfolios in spite of worries about the Federal Reserve's policy meeting next week.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) closed at 2,490.05 points, its highest close on record.

The index climbed as high as 2,500.33 during the session, the first time it has strengthened beyond the 2,500-point level.

Offshore investors bought a net 315.6 billion won (S$380.1 million) worth of KOSPI shares, pointing to strong stock demand ahead of third-quarter earnings later this week from companies such as SK Hynix and LG Electronics.

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Shares of SK Hynix jumped 4.3 per cent and LG Electronics gained nearly 2 per cent.

The South Korean won reversed earlier losses, supported by foreign investors' buying spree of local equities.

The won was quoted at 1,130.2 to the US dollar at the conclusion of onshore trade, up 0.1 per cent compared to Friday's close of 1,131.0.