Published : 2013-10-24 16:22
Updated : 2013-10-24 16:22
South Korean stocks gained 0.54 percent Thursday following better-than-expected manufacturing data from China, analysts said.
The local currency fell against the U.S. dollar.
The local currency ended at 1,061.00 won against the greenback, plunging 5.20 won from Wednesday's close.
During Thursday's trading session, the local currency soared to reach 1,054.30 won at 2:20 p.m., marking the highest level for 2013, breaking an earlier record of 1,054.50 won tallied on Jan. 15.
last-minute decline came as the Bank of Korea and the Ministry of Strategy and Finance expressed concerns that the local currency's recent movement is seen as "excessive," adding that they will take actions if necessary.
The verbal intervention came as the local currency has been under upward pressure against the U.S. dollar amid influx of foreign capital. The won has appreciated about 1 percent to the greenback so far this year.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 10.94 points to finish at 2,046.69. Trading volume was low at 250.9 million shares worth 3.75 trillion won ($3.54 billion), with gainers outpacing losers 505 to 300.
Analysts said Seoul shares gathered ground as investors' concerns over a possible economic slowdown in China was eased following the country's better-than-expected manufacturing data outlook for October.
British bank HSBC said the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) for China's manufacturing sector is expected to reach 50.9 this month, hovering above the earlier estimate of 50.4.
The PMI is an index that measures the health of a country's manufacturing sector. A reading of 50 or above represents an expansion of the sector from the previous month, while a reading below the figure represents a contraction.
The growth, however, was limited as investors took a wait-and-see approach on the world's No. 2 economy amid lingering concerns over its economic slump. China is the biggest trading partner for export-reliant South Korea.
"The market worries came as China is expected enhance its regulation on the financial market," said Moon Jung-hee, a researcher at KB Investment & Securities Co. "A financial turmoil in China will affect the Asian market."
Overseas investors became net buyers on the main bourse for the 40th consecutive trading session at a net 104.3 billion won, breaking its earlier record of 39 days set on Wednesday.
Institutions, on the other hand, offloaded more shares than they bought at 133.2 billion won. Individuals scooped up a net 22.2 billion won.
Hyundai Glovis, a local logistics service provider, advanced 8.2 percent to reach 244,000 won on reports that the firm's third-quarter operating profits surged 14.1 percent from a year earlier.
Retailers also closed bullish, with Lotte Shopping falling 0.13 percent to 399,500 won and Samsung C&T moving down 1.07 percent to 66,300 won. E-mart advanced 0.81 percent to 250,000 won.
Tech shares gathered ground, with market behemoth Samsung Electronics adding 0.49 percent to 1,449,000 won and top chipmaker SK hynix adding 1.85 percent to 33,100 won. Local handset maker LG Electronics gained 0.57 percent to 70,100 won.
In contrast, STX, the holding company of STX Group, decreased 2.37 percent to 2,470 won as a local credit appraiser slashed the firm's rating.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed lower. The yield on three-year Treasuries gained 0.01 percentage point to 2.8 percent and the return on the benchmark five-year government bonds also gained 0.02 percentage point to 3.04 percent. (Yonhap News)