Seoul stocks rebound on earnings hope; KOSDAQ sets record for 3rd day

SEOUL-- South Korean stocks rebounded Monday after a two-day slump, largely on speculations of solid corporate earnings in the second quarter. The Korean won rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) added 11.43 points, or 0.35 percent, to close at 3,293.21 points.

Trading volume was moderate at about 839 million shares worth around 14.3 trillion won (US$12.6 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 460 to 372.

Foreigners bought a net 1 billion won, while retail investors offloaded 263 billion won. Institutions purchased a net 263 billion won.

Stocks got off to a solid start, led by strong advances in tech and bio shares.

Tech large caps Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics are scheduled to report their quarterly earnings guidance this week.

"With the April-June quarterly earnings season coming up, expectations of strong corporate earnings seem to have lifted the KOSPI," HI Investment & Securities analyst Park Sang-hyun said.

Market optimism that the U.S. Federal Reserve would adhere to its accommodative policies also supported the stock price hike, he said.

Concerns about the recent spread of the new coronavirus and its variants drove up bio stocks on the main and secondary bourses.

The bio-laden KOSDAQ closed up 0.88 percent at 1,047.33 points, refreshing its 52-week high for the third consecutive session.

South Korea's daily new virus cases stayed in the 700s for the third day in a row Monday, prompting health authorities to warn against the spread of the highly contagious delta strain.

In Seoul, KOSPI's top cap Samsung Electronics rose 0.5 percent to 80,400 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix advanced 0.41 percent to 123,000 won.

Giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics increased 1.4 percent to 867,000 won, with Celltrion jumping 2.63 percent to 273,000 won.

Internet portal operator Naver lost 0.97 percent to 410,000 won, and rechargeable battery maker Samsung SDI slipped 0.14 percent to 722,000 won.

Leading chemical firm LG Chem increased 2.47 percent to 870,000 won, but top automaker Hyundai Motor retreated 1.26 percent to 236,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,131.8 won against the U.S. dollar, up 3.2 won from the previous session's close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed higher. The yield on three-year Treasurys lost 2.2 basis points to 1.462 percent, and the return on the benchmark five-year government bond fell 3 basis points to 1.751 percent.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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