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Executives’ buy boosts POSCO shares

POSCO shares staged a brisk rise on Thursday after its executives bought stock en masse to display their confidence and help stabilize the market.

The world’s fourth-largest steelmaker said its 73 executives led by chief executive Chung Joon-yang purchased a total of 4,351 shares, worth more than 1.82 billion won ($1.6 million).

Chung, who was recently elected to a second term, and president Choi Jong-tae each added 100 to their existing 1,614 and 1,786 shares. Another 70 officials acquired between 50 and 100 shares, company officials said.

POSCO stocks climbed 1.58 percent, or 6,500 won, to close at 418,500 won apiece.

“The steel industry is showing improvements at home and abroad, and the company has been stepping up efforts to become a leading global materials developer but we consider the shares still undervalued,” POSCO said in a statement.

The steel giant anticipates posting 39.2 trillion won in sales last year, up more than 20 percent on-year. But operating profit is expected to drop nearly 17 percent to 4.2 trillion won.