Seoul stocks snap 3-day losing streak on eased inflation worries

SEOUL-- South Korean stocks ended their three-day losing streak Tuesday, following the U.S. Federal Reserve's comments that helped ease concerns of early post-pandemic inflation. The Korean won rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 27.02 points, or 0.86 percent, to close at 3,171.32 points.

Trading volume was moderate at about 603 billion shares worth some 11.5 trillion won (US$10.2 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 618 to 224.

Foreigners bought a net 68 billion won, while retail investors sold a net 960 billion won. Institutions purchased a net 884 billion won.

Investor sentiment ran high throughout the trading, tracking 1.41 percent overnight gains on the tech-laden Nasdaq that followed the Fed's key officials comments that the recent price hikes and supply shortages may be temporary.

The Dow Industrial Average and the S&P 500 rebounded 0.54 percent and 0.99 percent, respectively.

"Investor appetite for bargain hunting seems to have increased over tech stocks, leading to the index's hike," Mirae Asset Securities analyst Seo Sang-young said.

In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics added 0.25 percent to 79,900 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix advanced 2.93 percent to 123,000 won.

Internet portal operator Naver increased 0.7 percent to 358,000 won, while giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics lost 0.93 percent to 850,000 won.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor declined 0.22 percent to 227,500 won, and leading chemical firm LG Chem closed unchanged at 892,000 won.

The local currency closed at 1,122 won against the U.S. dollar, up 5.1 won from the previous session's close.

Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed lower. The yield on three-year Treasurys added 2.6 basis points to 1.142 percent, and the return on the benchmark five-year government bond rose 0.3 basis point to 1.654 percent.

Source: Yonhap News Agency