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Seoul: Stocks trim early gains on profit booking

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South Korean shares trimmed some of their early gains on Thursday, after hitting over seven-month highs, as investors booked profits. Both the Korean won and the benchmark bond yield rose.

[SEOUL] South Korean shares trimmed some of their early gains on Thursday, after hitting over seven-month highs, as investors booked profits. Both the Korean won and the benchmark bond yield rose.

The Seoul stock market's main Kospi closed up 1.80 points, or 0.08 per cent, at 2,196.56. The index climbed as much as 0.5 per cent to its highest level since May 3 in early trade, driven by a chipmakers' rally.

Investors booked profits as the benchmark index approached 2,200, as they saw the level was difficult to retain without strong earnings, said Ryoo Yong Seok, an analyst at KB Securities.

Donald Trump on Wednesday became the third US president to be impeached as the House of Representatives formally charged him with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress in a historic step that will inflame partisan tensions across a deeply divided America.

However as the possibility of Mr Trump's impeachment is seen to be low, market reaction to the vote remained muted, Mr Ryoo said.

Foreigners were net buyers of 257.8 billion won (S$297.35 million) worth of shares on the main board.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.38 per cent, after US stocks were mixed overnight. Japanese stocks fell 0.29 per cent.

The Kospi has risen 7.62 per cent so far this year, and gained 2.4 per cent in the previous 30 trading sessions.

The trading volume during the session in the KOSPI index was 630.99 million shares and, of the total traded issues of 907, the number of advancing shares was 423.

 

REUTERS