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Seoul: Stocks near 6-week high, Samsung Electronics hits record, won firms

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[SEOUL] South Korean shares rose more than one per cent on Thursday to their highest in nearly six weeks, buoyed by fresh gains on Wall Street and in index heavyweight Samsung Electronics Co.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) was up 1.07 per cent at 2013.12 points as of 0316 GMT and looked set to post its third straight day of gains.

Shares of Samsung Electronics hit a new all-time high of 1,801,000 won earlier in the session and were trading at 1,788,000 won by midday, up 0.9 percent from the previous close.

"Foreign investors are driving the rise, and overnight gains from the US is giving the local shares some big boost. Investors are bullish about Samsung Electronics in particular as many sees its profit to rise when the new product gets released," Oh Hyun Seok, an analyst with Samsung Securities said.

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Foreign investors net purchased 181.5 billion Korean won (S$222.24 million) worth of Kospi shares near mid-session, supporting the index.

Advancers outnumbered decliners 539 to 257.

The South Korean won gained 0.92 per cent to 1,157.2 near mid session.

December futures on three-year treasury bonds added 0.07 points to 109.38.

Investors appeared little fazed by remarks from South Korea's finance ministry, which said it is concerned about further risks to the economy from "domestic issues", as parliament prepares to hold an impeachment vote on South Korean President Park Geun-Hye on Friday.


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