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Asia, Forex

S.Korean shares drop as virus surge dents rebound hopes

* KOSPI falls, foreigners net sellers * Korean won strengthens versus U.S. dollar * South Korea benchmark bond yield falls SEOUL, July 7 (Reuters) – Round-up of South Korean financial markets: ** South Korean shares fell on Tuesday as mounting COVID-19 cases assuaged hopes of an economic rebound, while investors were cautious ahead of the quarterly corporate earnings. The Korean won strengthened and the benchmark bond yield fell. ** The Seoul stock market’s main KOSPI was down 10.52 points, or 0.48%, at 2,177.41, as of 0200 GMT. ** The number of U.S. coronavirus deaths exceeded 130,000 on Monday, following a surge of new cases that has put President Donald Trump’s handling of the crisis under the microscope and derailed efforts to restart the economy. ** South Korea reported 44 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, bringing the national tally to 13,181. ** Stocks in early session rose as much as 0.9% as U.S. services industry activity rebounded sharply in June, almost returning to its pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels. ** Investors maintained a cautious stance ahead of corporate earnings for the second quarter, said Chang Hee-jong, an analyst at Hi Investment & Securities. ** Meanwhile, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said its second-quarter operating profit likely rose 23%, beating analysts’ estimates on solid chip sales to data centres catering for a work-from-home economy. Its shares were down 1.5%. ** Foreigners were net sellers of 114.4 billion won ($95.87 million) worth of shares on the main board. ** The won was quoted 0.18% higher at 1,193.7 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform . ** In offshore trading, the won was quoted down 0.2% at 1,193.8 per dollar, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,193.1. ** In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.04 point to 112.06. ** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield fell by 0.7 basis point to 0.846%, while the benchmark 10-year yield fell by 1.7 basis points to 1.392%. ($1 = 1,193.3000 won) (Reporting by Jihoon Lee, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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