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Seoul stocks hit another record on tech shares

South Korean stocks closed at another record high Wednesday, led mainly by technology shares, analysts said. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 33.04 points, or 1.31 percent, to close at 2,556.47. The gain marks the fourth consecutive session that the main bourse has moved up. Trade volume was moderate at 357.9 million shares worth 7.44 trillion won ($6.79 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 449 to 354.

Analysts said the growth was mainly attributable to technology shares, with market behemoth Samsung Electronics closing at a new high by advancing 3.89 percent to 2,861,000 won.

"While Apple and its related shares gained ground on Wall Street recently, companies having connections to Samsung Electronics are also trading bullishly on the South Korean bourse, especially after Samsung said a day earlier that the supply of chips would remain tight down the road," said Seo Sang-young, a researcher at Kiwoom Securities Co. 


Foreign investors bought a net 305 billion won of local stocks, while institutional investors dumped a net 111 billion won. Retail investors sold more shares than they bought at 235 billion won.

Other major tech firms closed higher, with No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix moving up 3.77 percent at 85,300 won. LG Display advanced 0.68 percent at 29,500 won and Samsung SDI jumped 8.98 percent at 224,500 won.

Pharmaceutical shares had a bullish day, with Samsung BioLogics increasing 5.73 percent at 406,000 won and Hanmi Pharmaceuticals climbing 7.66 percent at 499,000 won.

South Korea's second-largest portal operator Kakao increased 4.86 percent to 151,000 won, while No. 1 player Naver shed 3.8 percent at 860,000 won.

Carmakers suffered a bearish session, with No. 1 Hyundai Motor sliding 0.31 percent at 160,500 won and its sister Kia Motors moving down 0.14 percent to 35,350 won.

Mobile carriers had a mixed day of trading, with SK Telecom falling 0.19 percent at 263,500 won while No. 3 player LG Uplus moved up 0.39 percent at 12,900 won. KT remained unchanged at 29,350 won.

The local currency closed at 1,114.50 won against the US dollar, up 5.9 won from the previous session's close. 

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed higher. The yield on three-year Treasurys shed 2.4 basis points to 2.140 percent and the return on benchmark five-year government bonds fell 2.5 basis points to 2.373 percent. (Yonhap)