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Financial firms’ derivatives trading jumps 36 percent

Korean financial companies’ derivatives trading jumped 36.2 percent on-year in 2010 on increased transactions of stock-linked investment products, the financial regulator said Thursday.

The total trading volume of such derivatives as bond and stock futures and options at home and abroad came to 6.7 quadrillion won ($6.1 trillion) in 2010, compared with 4.9 quadrillion won in the previous year, the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) said in a report.

The big gain came as domestic financial firms sharply increased bets on stock options and futures on the back of local and overseas stock exchanges’ solid performance last year, according to the FSS.

The country’s key stock index, the KOSPI, surged nearly 21 percent last year from 2009 as the economy strongly emerged from the aftermath of the global financial crisis.

Brokerage houses accounted for the bulk of the total 2010 trading volume, carrying out 71.3 percent of the total transactions last year, while banks made up 94.3 percent of the outstanding contracts as of the end of last year, the regulator said.

As of the end of 2010, local financial firms held 7,022 trillion won worth of listed and unlisted derivatives contracts, up 12.3 percent from the preceding year, the FSS said. 

(Yonhap News)
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