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South Korea: Stocks, won rise on hopes of improved inter-Korean relations

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[SEOUL] South Korea's Kospi stock index rose on Friday as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae In met at the demilitarised zone between the countries in the first summit for both nations in over a decade and improved sentiment.

The Korean won gained, while bond yields fell. At 0231 GMT, the Kospi was up 16.97 points, or 0.69 per cent, at 2,491.97.

Shares of Samsung Electronics gained 1.6 per cent as investors scooped up shares on last trading day ahead of a three-day halt before a 50:1 stock split.

The won was quoted at 1,077.7 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.3 per cent firmer than its previous close at 1,080.9.

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In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,077.7 per US dollar, down 0.1 per cent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it was being transacted at 1,060.5 per dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.49 per cent, after US stocks ended the previous session with gains.

Japanese stocks rose 0.42 per cent.

The Kospi climbed around 0.3 per cent so far this year, and up by 0.67 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.

The trading volume during the session on the Kospi index was 232,200,000 shares and, of the total traded issues of 881, the number of advancing shares was 421.

Foreigners were net buyers of 81,614 million won worth of shares.

The US dollar has risen 1.05 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 1,098.4 on February 6 this year.

In money and debt markets, June futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.07 points to 107.73.

REUTERS