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Seoul: Stocks slide to 3-week low as Wall Street steps back; won rebounds
[SEOUL] South Korean shares ticked down to a three-week low early on Thursday, the last trading day of the year, as investors offloaded stocks following a mostly sluggish session on Wall Street.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) was down 0.1 per cent at 2,021.62 points as of 0220 GMT after touching the lowest level since Dec 8, 2016.
The Kospi was set to post biggest yearly percentage gain of more than 3 per cent in four years.
"Since today is the final day of the market, there will not be much going on and therefore trading is likely to remain muted," said Bae Sung-Young, a stock analyst at Hyundai Securities.
Offshore investors were set to be net sellers, offloading 26.6 billion Korean won (S$31.95 million) worth of Kospi shares near mid-session, weighing on the index.
Shares SK Hynix Inc lost 1.4 per cent while LG Display dropped nearly 2 per cent.
Decliners outnumbered advancers 486 to 303.
The South Korean won inched up, reversing losses suffered after Finance Minister Yoo Il-Ho said the currency's fall against the US dollar is not fast.
The won stood at 1,208.0 against the US dollar, up 0.2 per cent compared with Wednesday's close of 1,210.5.
The currency was set to post a third straight year of decline.
March futures on three-year treasury bonds gained 0.12 point to 109.67.