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Seoul: Stocks, won tumble before tariff deadline in US-China trade row

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[SEOUL] South Korea's Kospi stock index and the won fell on Thursday as sentiment was dampened ahead of a US deadline for tariffs on Chinese imports. Bond yields also slid. 

At 06:32 GMT, the Kospi was down 7.91 points or 0.35 per cent at 2,257.55, hitting its lowest close since May 2017. The won was quoted at 1,118.6 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.37 per cent weaker than its previous close at 1,114.5.

In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,118.37 per US dollar, down 0.28 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it was being asked at 1,102.05 per dollar. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.58 per cent, while US stocks were closed on Wednesday for the Independence Day holiday. Japanese stocks weakened 0.78 per cent.

The KOSPI is down around 8.2 per cent so far this year, and down by 7.93 per cent in the previous 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.

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The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index was 342,616,000 shares and, of the total 888 traded issues, the number of advancing shares was 240. Foreigners were net sellers of 92,720 million won worth of shares. The US dollar has risen 4.87 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 the low is 1,125.17 on June 27, 2018.

In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.05 point to 108.14. The South Korean three-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was quoted at 1.65 per cent, while the benchmark three-year Korean treasury bond yielded 2.1 per cent, lower than the previous day's 2.12 per cent.

REUTERS