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Seoul: Stocks, won edge higher on favourable US jobs data

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[SEOUL] South Korea's KOSPI stock index and the won gained on Monday as US jobs data released on Friday eased concerns on faster rate increases by the Federal Reserve. South Korean bond yields also rose. 

At 06:32 GMT, the KOSPI was up 12.93 points or 0.57 per cent at 2,285.80. Tech giant Samsung Electronics soared as much as 2.7 per cent, reaching its highest intraday level since July 5, while the sub-index for electric and electronics rose 1.8 per cent.

South Korea's steel manufacturers tumbled as EU countries voted on Thursday in favour of provisional measures proposed by the European Commission to curb steel imports into the bloc, following a US decision to slap tariffs on EU steel and aluminium. The sub-index for iron, steel and metals tumbled 2.4 per cent while Posco and Hyundai Steel closed 2.4 per cent and 4.6 per cent lower, respectively.

The won was quoted at 1,112.2 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.33 per cent firmer, marking its highest close since June 22.

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In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,111.05 per US dollar, up 0.33 per cent, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it was being asked at 1,096.05 per dollar. 

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 1.34 per cent after U.S. stocks ended the previous session with mild gains. Japanese stocks rose 1.21 per cent.

The KOSPI is down around 7.9 per cent so far this year and is down 8.05 per cent in the last 30 days. 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 on the KOSPI index was 349,047,000 shares and of the total traded issues of 887, the number of advancing shares was 331. Foreigners were net sellers of 59,088 million won worth of shares. The US dollar has risen 4.19 per cent against the won this year. The won's high for the year is 1,053.55 per dollar on April 2, 2018 and low is 1,125.17 on June 27, 2018. 

In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds fell 0.01 points to 108.13. The Korean three-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was quoted at 1.65 per cent while the benchmark three-year Korean treasury bond yielded 2.107 per cent, higher than the previous day's 2.11 per cent.

REUTERS