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Markets

South Korea shares slip on profit-taking; post 11th weekly gain in 12

  • The won ended at 1,103.2 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.45% lower than its previous close at 1,098.2.
Published January 22, 2021

SEOUL: Round-up of South Korean financial markets:

South Korean shares snapped a three-day winning streak on Friday, as investors booked profits in major heavyweights after a recent global rally led by US stimulus and President Joe Biden's inauguration, but posted an eleventh weekly jump in 12. The won weakened, while the benchmark bond yield rose.

The KOSPI closed down 20.21 points, or 0.64%, at 3,140.63, after it had gained 1.5% to hit a record closing high on Thursday. The index, however, gained 1.8% for the week.

Major heavyweights slid with chip giants Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix tumbling 1.5% and 2.3%, respectively. Hyundai Motor also slid 2.8%.

That outweighed strong gains in technology shares. Portal giant Naver surged 6.3% to its record high and messenger app operator Kakao added 2%, while battery maker Samsung SDI also soared 6.3%.

A Reuters poll showed the South Korean economy likely grew at a slower pace in the fourth quarter as a boost in exports was partially offset by sluggish domestic demand due to toughened COVID-19 social distancing measures since late last year.

"Overall Asian markets were seen sliding on profit-taking after (recent gains on) Biden's inauguration and hopes for further US stimulus," said Daishin Securities' analyst Lee Kyoung-min.

Foreigners were net sellers of 256.7 billion won ($232.66 million) worth of shares on the main board.

The won ended at 1,103.2 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.45% lower than its previous close at 1,098.2.

For the week, the won edged down 0.3%, logging the third straight weekly loss.

In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,103.5, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,103.4.

The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 2.0 basis points to 0.991%.

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