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Seoul stocks up for 3rd day on recovery hopes

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Tuesday. (Yonhap)
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Tuesday. (Yonhap)
South Korean stocks advanced for the third consecutive day Tuesday on the back of strong economic data that fueled investor appetite for risk. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 17.95 points, or 0.56 percent, to close at 3,221.87 points.

Trading volume was moderate at about 1.4 billion shares worth some 15.1 trillion won ($13.7 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 577 to 272.

Foreigners sold a net 37 billion won, while institutions purchased 653 billion won. Retail investors offloaded a net 614 billion won.

The KOSPI got off to a muted start on investor concerns over early post-pandemic inflation that may trigger tapering talks in the United States. Key Federal Reserve officials are set to comment on the state of the US economy Wednesday (US time).

Stocks increasingly gained ground, however, backed by strong economic indicators at home and China.

South Korea's exports jumped 45.6 percent on-year in May to extend their gains to a seventh consecutive month. China's Caixin Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index in May hit a yearly high of 52.8.

"Improved economic indicators seem to have contributed to the KOSPI's gain," Daeshin Securities analyst Lee Kyung-min said. "The KOSPI has gone up for the past few days, tracking signals on increasing corporate earnings and economic growth momentum."

In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics edged up 0.12 percent to 80,600 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix moved up 1.18 percent to 128,500 won.  

Internet portal operator Naver advanced 1.24 percent to 367,000 won, and giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics lost 1.54 percent to 832,000 won.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor increased 0.85 percent to 237,000 won, and leading chemical firm LG Chem climbed 0.73 percent to 825,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,105.9 won against the US dollar, up 5 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)

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