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South Korea: Stocks slightly firmer on earnings expectations, investors wary

[SEOUL] South Korean shares continued to hover around previous record highs on Tuesday, bolstered by firm corporate earnings expectations though sentiment remained subdued following a weak Wall Street finish as US tech firms sold off.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) was up 0.1 per cent at 2,491.93 points as of 0141 GMT, after wobbling in and out of negative territory earlier in the session.

"A large sell-off in tech sector on Wall Street overnight is also affecting Seoul stock markets today," said Seo Sang-young, a stock analyst at Kiwoom Securities.

Offshore investors were poised to be net sellers of KOSPI shares near mid-session, offloading 33.3 billion Korean won worth.

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Seo added that there are still hopes about September quarter earnings release this week from market heavyweight companies like Posco, SK Hynix, and LG Display, which are expected to allow further upside for the Kospi.

SK Hynix and LG Display fell 2.7 per cent and nearly 1 per cent, respectively, due to foreign sell-off after rising on Monday.

Advancers outnumbered decliners 419 to 347.

The South Korean won edged up, tracking the greenback's weakness in the global markets.

The won stood at 1,128.9 to the dollar, up 0.1 per cent from Monday's close of 1,130.2.

December futures on three-year treasury bonds shed 0.05 point to 108.13.

REUTERS