Back To Top

Seoul stocks fall on foreign sell-offs

South Korean stocks fell Wednesday, weighed down by sell-offs by foreign investors as their risk appetite weakened by a sharp decline on Wall Street overnight. The Korean won fell against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index shed 10.08 points, or 0.46 percent, to close at 2,168.30. Trade volume was moderate at 388 million shares worth 5.45 trillion won ($4.85 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 521 to 271.

The local stock market opened lower, retreating from an almost six-year high from the previous session, as investors opted to cash in part of recent gains.

Global investment sentiment turned bearish over concerns that Trump may struggle to deliver his economic policies, including tax cuts.

Seo Sang-young, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities, said that investors' sentiment was hurt by the sharp decline on Wall Street.

But a further fall in local equities may be limited as the nation's exports remained steady. Government data showed Tuesday that South Korean exports during the first 20 days of March gained 14.8 percent on year.

Samsung Electronics fell 0.23 percent to end at 2,123,000 won, while SK hynix, a global chipmaker, rose 2.31 percent to 48,650 won.

Naver, the operator of the country's top Internet portal, shed 2.53 percent to 849,000 won.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor remained flat at 170,000 won, and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors dipped 2.22 percent to 37,450 won.

The local currency closed at 1,123.30 won against the US dollar, down 3 won from the previous session's close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed higher.

The yield on three-year Treasurys fell 0.8 basis point to 1.662 percent, and the return on the benchmark five-year government bond declined 1.4 basis points to 1.849 percent. (Yonhap)