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Seoul shares snap 3-day rise as early rate-cut optimism fades

April 3, 2024 - 16:15 By Yonhap
An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Wednesday. (Yonhap)

Seoul shares ended lower Wednesday to snap their three-day winning streak, as robust economic data in the United States spurred speculation that the US Federal Reserve will keep interest rates higher for longer. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 46.19 points, or 1.68 percent, to close at 2,706.97.

Trade volume was heavy at 628.41 million shares worth 12.74 trillion won ($9.4 billion), with decliners outpacing gainers 632 to 246.

Institutions and foreigners bought a combined 947 billion won worth of stocks, offsetting individuals' stock purchases valued at 924 billion won.

Strong manufacturing figures from the US and China this week and expectations that the Fed will be in no rush to begin lowering rates added to selling pressure, analysts said.

Also, investors opted to cash in recent gains.

In Seoul, tech, battery and auto stocks were the lead decliners.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co. fell 1.1 percent to 84,100 won, major chipmaker SK hynix Inc. declined 3.8 percent to 179,200 won and leading battery maker LG Energy Solution Ltd. was down 4.3 percent to 376,000 won.

Industry leader Hyundai Motor shed 1.82 percent to end at 216,000 won.

Among the gainers, the country's biggest shipbuilding group, HD Hyundai, rose 0.1 percent to 70,400 won, No. 2 full-service carrier Asiana Airlines Inc. climbed 0.9 percent to 11,210 won and leading cosmetics firm Amorepacific Corp. gained 1.1 percent to 135,700 won.

The local currency closed at 1,348.90 won against the greenback, up 3.2 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)