• The South Korean benchmark stock index KOSPI ended down 18.10 points.
  • The Korean won slid, while the benchmark bond yields strengthened.

SEOUL: Round-up of South Korean financial markets: South Korean shares trimmed early losses on Thursday as fresh reports raised hopes that Washington and Beijing would settle some economic disputes, though investors remained cautious ahead of high-level trade talks set to begin later in the day.

The Korean won slid, while the benchmark bond yields strengthened.

Investor sentiment was lifted by a Bloomberg report, which cited that the White House is looking at rolling out a previously agreed currency pact with China, raising hopes of a partial deal.

Washington will soon issue licenses allowing some U.S. firms to supply non-sensitive goods to China's Huawei Technologies , the New York Times reported on Wednesday.

Top negotiators from the two countries were scheduled to meet in Washington on Thursday and Friday to end a bruising 15-month trade war.

South Korea's stock markets marked its worst session in more than a month after the South China Morning Post reported that the United States and China made no progress in deputy-level trade talks held on Monday and Tuesday in Washington, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the meetings.

However, CNBC reporter said the White House has denied the report about the Chinese negotiators' early departure from Washington.

The South Korean benchmark stock index KOSPI ended down 18.10 points, or 0.88pc, at 2,028.15. Earlier in the day, the index lost as much as 1.7pc, marking its worst intraday trading level since Sept. 6.

Foreigners were net sellers of 164.7 billion won ($137.76 million) worth of shares on the main board.

The won was quoted at 1,196.2 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.26pc lower than its previous close at 1,193.1.

In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,195.8 per U.S. dollar, up 0.1pc from the previous session, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract  was quoted at 1,194.4 per dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan  gained 0.20pc, after U.S. stocks closed higher overnight. Japanese stocks rose 0.45pc.

The KOSPI dropped 0.63pc so far this year, but gained 4.9pc in the previous 30 trading sessions.

The trading volume during the session in the KOSPI index  was 438.54 million shares of the total traded issues of 886, and the number of advancing shares was 266.

The won lost 6.7pc against the U.S dollar so far this year.

In money and debt markets, December futures on three-year treasury bonds dipped 0.05 points to 110.90, while the 3-month Certificate of Deposit rate was quoted at 1.55pc.

The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 0.7 basis points to 1.274pc, while the benchmark 10-year yield gained by 2.4 basis points to 1.457pc.