South Korean securities firms increased their overseas investments in the first half from a year earlier as part of efforts to diversify their profit sources, the financial regulator said Thursday.
Foreign investments made by 28 local brokerages totaled 2.48 trillion won ($2.17 billion) as of end-June, up 25.7 percent from the previous year, according to the Financial Supervisory Service.
The tally includes money spent on purchasing foreign assets, such as equities and bonds, as well as investments made on overseas-based subsidiaries and units.
Securities firms invested in 1.43 trillion won worth of foreign stocks and bonds as of the end of June, the FSS said.
By country, the United States was the top investment destination with 294.9 billion won. The regulator, meanwhile, said investments in Hong Kong and China steeply rose, growing around three-fold and seven-fold, respectively.
Brokerages spent 1.04 trillion won on global expansion, compared with 1.01 trillion won a year earlier.
As of end-June, local securities firms operated 93 offices, units and local subsidiaries in 15 countries, according to the FSS.