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Kospi hits a 6-year high on foreign buying

South Korean stocks on Tuesday hit a six-year high, on strong buying from foreign investors with the global stock market rally, brokerage data showed.

The nation’s benchmark Kospi closed at 2,196.85, rising by 1.06 percent from the previous session. The figure is the highest since the index closed at 2,200.73 on May 3, 2011, according to the Korea Exchange. The tech-heavy Kosdaq also went up 0.95 percent to close at 632.57.
A dealer is seen in front of an electronic board showing the Kospi closing at a six-year high of 2,196.85, at a branch of KEB Hana Bank in central Seoul, Tuesday. (Yonhap)
A dealer is seen in front of an electronic board showing the Kospi closing at a six-year high of 2,196.85, at a branch of KEB Hana Bank in central Seoul, Tuesday. (Yonhap)

Foreign investors net bought 651.4 billion won worth stocks, pulling up the Kospi. The volume is the largest since 681.9 billion won net buying on March 2.

Analysts attributed the surge in Kospi to improved investment sentiment, sparked by the France’s Sunday close of first round voting for the presidential election with centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron receiving the most support.

“This year’s global risk indicators have gone to the lowest level with France’s first voting. Investors’ stronger preference in risky assets drove up indexes more than 1 percent not only in Korea but in Asian markets such as Japan and Taiwan,” Kim Jeong-hyeon, an analyst at IBK Investment & Securities, told The Korea Herald.

“The Kospi also reflected improved sentiment towards Samsung Electronics for anticipation of its corporate governance restructuring, as well as Korea’s improved exports.”

In terms of closing price, Samsung Electronics on Tuesday hit a record high of 2,135,000 won per share, rising 3.54 percent from Monday. Foreign investors net bought 140,289 shares of Samsung Electronics, according to industry data.

The nation’s auto giant Hyundai Motor rose 2.12 percent. KB Financial went up 1.56 percent and Hyundai Mobis, up 1.55 percent.

By sector, the electronics industry saw a 2.87 percent increase, securities, 2.34 percent, medicine and precision, 2.14 percent and manufacturing, 1.48 percent.

The won went up by 4.5 won to close at 1,125.4 won against the greenback.

By Kim Yoon-mi (yoonmi@heraldcorp.com)
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