Views Article – Sharenet Wealth

Asia, Forex

S.Korea stocks rise on solid hopes of interest rate cut by U.S. Fed

* KOSPI index rises, foreigners net buyers * Korean won weakens versus U.S. dollar * South Korea benchmark bond yield up SEOUL, July 12 (Reuters) – Round-up of South Korean financial markets: ** South Korean shares advanced on Friday as hopes of an interest rate cut by the U.S. central bank remained firm, while strong U.S. inflation data relieved concerns over the world’s largest economy. The Korean won dropped, while the benchmark bond yield rose. ** U.S. underlying consumer prices increased by the most in nearly 1-1/2 years in June amid solid gains in the costs of a range of goods and services, but will probably not change expectations the Federal Reserve will cut rates this month. ** Investors are broadly expecting a rate cut by the U.S. Federal Reserve later this month and U.S. inflation figures tempered worries on economy, said Noh Dong-kil, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities. Until July end, when the Fed will decide whether to cut rates, South Korean markets would continue positive flow, he added. ** As of 0240 GMT, the benchmark KOSPI stock index rose 6.70 points or 0.30% to 2,086.87 points. ** Shares of South Korea’s retail companies gained after the country’s Minimum Wage Commission said it has agreed to raise next year’s hourly minimum wage by 2.9% to 8,590 won ($7.30), the weakest hike since 2010. ** Shares of SKC Kolon PI , a joint venture of SKC and Kolon Industries , jumped on a media report that the two firms have decided to sell their stake in the world’s leading polyimide maker. ** Foreigners were net buyers of 6 billion won ($5.10 million) worth of shares on the main board. ** The won was quoted at 1,176.2 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform , 0.23% lower than its previous close at 1,173.5. ** In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,175.7 per U.S. dollar, down 0.1% from the previous day, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,174.8 per dollar. ** MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.13%, after U.S. stocks gained . Japanese stocks rose 0.01%. ** The KOSPI has risen 2.31% so far this year and gained 2.8% in the previous 30 trading sessions. ** The current price-to-earnings ratio is 12.10, the dividend yield is 1.28% and the market capitalisation is 1,242.04 trillion won. ** The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index was 172.34 million shares and, of the total traded issues of 892, the number of advancing shares was 430. ** The won has lost 5.1% against the U.S dollar so far this year. ** In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds fell 0.06 points to 110.47. ** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 1.7 basis points to 1.436%, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose by 3.8 basis points to 1.585%. ($1 = 1,176.1200 won) (Reporting by Hayoung Choi; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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