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Seoul: Stocks end marginally higher on profit taking; won gains


[SEOUL] South Korea's Kospi stock index closed slightly higher on Monday, despite a sharp rise in Chinese stocks, as foreigners and individuals became net sellers taking profit from rise in previous sessions. Both the South Korean won and the benchmark bond yield gained. At the close, the Seoul stock market's main Kospi index added 3.38 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 2,179.49 points. The index gained 0.9 per cent on Friday and 0.3 per cent on Thursday, respectively.

South Korean stocks were almost unchanged from previous closing during the session as investors sold on profit taking, while some of them bought on solid Chinese stocks, Seo Sang-young, an analyst from Kiwoom Securities, said in a note. Foreigners were net sellers of 45.2 billion won (S$53.9 million) worth of shares on the main board.

The won was quoted at 1,132.1 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.46 per cent higher than its previous close at 1,137.3. In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,131.9 per US dollar, up 0.2 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,130.9 per dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.82 per cent, after US stocks rose on Friday. Japanese stocks rose 0.62 per cent.

The Kospi has risen 6.78 per cent so far this year, and fell 0.1 per cent in the previous 30 trading sessions.

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 249.16 million shares and, of the total traded issues of 898, the number of advancing shares was 518.

The won has lost 1.4 per cent against the US dollar this year.

In money and debt markets, March futures on three-year treasury bonds fell 0.03 points to 109.16, while the three-month Certificate of Deposit rate was quoted at 1.90 per cent.

The most liquid three-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 0.8 basis points to 1.812 per cent, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose by 0.7 basis point to 1.995 per cent. 


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