The Korea Herald


Stocks end lower on weak investor sentiment

By Kim Yon-se

Published : Jan. 10, 2014 - 20:13

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Seoul shares ended lower on Friday, extending the losing streak to three sessions, as investors sat on their hands ahead of the release of the U.S. jobs report, analysts said. Massive selling by foreign investors also weighed on the market. The South Korean won rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index fell 7.57 points, or 0.39 percent, to 1,938.54. Trading volume on the main bourse came in at 254.22 million shares worth 4.21 trillion won ($4 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 407 to 382.

The market started higher, bolstered by gains in steel and construction shares, but turned lower in morning trade due to a foreign selling binge and soured investor sentiment.

“Investors remained jittery over the results of the U.S. jobs report to be out this weekend as it could decide the pace of the Fed’s planned monetary stimulus cuts,” said Kang Hyun-gie, an analyst at I’M Securities & Investment Co.

In the mid-term, the Fed’s measures could push the greenback higher against the won, discouraging foreign investors from buying local shares, he added.

The U.S. Labor Department is scheduled to release its December employment report on Jan. 10. (Yonhap News)