The Korea Herald


Seoul shares hit over 2-yr high on strong foreign buying

By Yonhap

Published : June 18, 2024 - 16:02

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An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Tuesday. (Yonhap) An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Tuesday. (Yonhap)

South Korean stocks closed higher to end at an over two-year high Tuesday as foreign investors scooped up blue chips after a tech-led rally on Wall Street. The local currency advanced slightly against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index increased 19.82 points, or 0.72 percent, to close at 2,763.92, rebounding from a 0.52 percent drop the previous day.

The closing index marks the highest since Feb. 20, 2022, when the comparable reading was 2,771.93.

Trade volume was moderate at 552 million shares worth 13 trillion won ($9.41 billion), with losers outnumbering winners 497 to 376.

Foreign investors purchased a net 639 billion won worth of local shares to lead the bullish market, offsetting a net selling of 349.7 billion won and 220.7 billion won by individuals and institutions, respectively.

Overnight, US stocks were buoyed by big tech shares, with Apple, Microsoft and Micron advancing. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.49 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.95 percent.

In Seoul, chipmakers and automakers finished in positive territory to lend support to the market advance.

Samsung Electronics, the world's biggest memory chip producer, rose 2.18 percent to 79,800 won, and its rival SK hynix jumped 5.16 percent to 234,500 won.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor and its sister Kia gained 1.62 percent and 1.47 percent to 283,000 won and 131,000 won, respectively, after news that its Indian unit is set for an initial public offering.

Korea Gas Corp. vaulted 4.69 percent to 55,800 won on continuing expectations for developing potential oil and gas reserves in the East Sea.

However, shares of battery, oil refinery and entertainment went south.

Leading battery maker LG Energy Solution dropped 1.63 percent to 331,000 won, and top oil refinery SK innovation sank 5.24 percent to 103,100 won.

Hybe, the record label behind global superstars BTS, retreated 1.28 percent to 199,900 won, and entertainment giant CJ ENM declined 4.03 percent to 83,400 won.

However, SK, the holding company of SK Group, fell 4.47 percent to 169,000 won after its Chairman Chey Tae-won claimed a "critical error" in his record divorce ruling the previous day.

The local currency closed at 1,381.1 won against the US greenback, up 0.1 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)