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Seoul stocks up for fourth day on possible Fed slowdown; won sharply up

Jan. 9, 2023 - 16:16 By Yonhap
An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Monday. (Yonhap)

Seoul shares ended higher Monday amid expectations of slower US rate hikes. The Korean won sharply rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 60.22 points, or 2.63 percent, to close at 2,350.19 points.

Trading volume was moderate at about 334.74 million shares worth some 6.9 trillion won ($5.2 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 799 to 93.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2.1 percent to 33,630.61 points on Friday, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite jumped 2.6 percent to 10,569.29.

Investors scooped up local stocks as they expect a slowdown in US wage growth and an unexpected contraction in services activity may prod the Federal Reserve to go easy on its aggressive rate hike plans, analysts said.

Foreigners and institutions bought a combined 1.4 trillion won worth of stocks, offsetting individuals' stock selling valued at 1.39 trillion won.

In Seoul, most market heavyweights closed higher.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co. rose 2.9 percent to 60,700 won, No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix Inc. jumped 3.5 percent to 86,000 won, top carmaker Hyundai Motor Co. gained 2.8 percent to 164,000 won, and leading car battery maker LG Energy Solution was up 4.5 percent to 464,000 won.

Among decliners, leading wireless services provider SK Telecom Co. fell 0.2 percent to 47,500 won.

The local currency closed at 1,243.50 won against the US dollar, up 25.10 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)