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Seoul: Won, stocks slip as dollar's recovery turns investors risk-averse

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[SEOUL] The South Korean won and shares eased early on Friday as investors turned away from riskier assets after the US dollar rebounded while global oil prices declined.

The won stood at 1,161.8 per US dollar as of 0215 GMT, down 0.5 per cent compared to Thursday's close of 1,156.0, but was still set to show an advance for the week, after suffering a decline in the previous week.

June Park, a foreign exchange analyst at Daishin Economic Research Institute, expected the won to trade around current levels until the likely timing of a US rate rise became clearer.

The US Federal Open Market Committee is due to meet on June 14-15 while Bank of Japan policymakers will meet on June 15-16.

"Although there are two major central banks' policy meetings scheduled for next week, they won't impact the won since the market already knows what to expect from them," added Ms Park.

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The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) was down 0.4 per cent at 2,015.81 points, and was on course to post a third consecutive week of gains.

Decliners outnumbered advancers 427 to 380.

Offshore investors sold a net 47.2 billion Korean won (S$55.04 million) worth of Kospi shares near mid-session.

Seoul prosecution investigators raided Lotte Group headquarters early on Friday, in what media was calling a widening investigation into South Korea's fifth-largest conglomerate, but there was little impact on related shares.

Builder Samsung Engineering Co Ltd gained 7.4 per cent, and Korea Electric Power Corp rose 1.3 per cent.

June futures on three-year treasury bonds gained 0.02 point to 110.68.


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