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Kospi ends at fresh high on recovery hopes

South Korea's stock market reached an all-time high for the second consecutive day Friday, in sync with a global stock rally that stemmed from hopes of a quick economic rebound and a massive US stimulus package. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) rose 16.74 points, or 0.51 percent, to close at 3,302.84 points.

Trading volume was moderate at about 1.2 billion shares worth some 18.4 trillion won ($16.3 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 560 to 272.

Foreigners bought a net 246 billion won, while retail investors sold 820 billion won. Institutions purchased a net 589 billion won.

After a solid start, the Kospi finished above the psychologically-important 3,300-point mark for the first time. The stock briefly hit an all-time intraday high of 3,292.27 points in the morning session on strong financial and tech advances.

Optimism for a global economic rebound ran high following the US bipartisan infrastructure deal that pushed up the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 to records. Stocks rallied in most advanced economies, including China, Hong Kong and elsewhere in Asia.

In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics increased 0.49 percent to 81,600 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix climbed 1.98 percent to 128,500 won.

Internet portal operator Naver shed 2.26 percent to 410,000 won, and its rival Kakao retreated 1.59 percent to 154,500 won. Giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics lost 0.7 percent to 849,000 won.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor edged up 0.21 percent to 243,000 won, and leading chemical firm LG Chem moved up 0.84 percent to 838,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,127.7 won against the US dollar, up 7.2 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)