RTTNews - The Korean stock market appears to be in a correction mode on Wednesday with participants looking to take profits after recent gains. Bank stocks are seeing a sell-off. Oil, energy and steel stocks are also seen struggling for support. Some buying is seen in the shipbuilding space today.
The benchmark index KOSPI, which fell to 1,403 after an early surge to 1,427, is currently trading at 1,410, down 2.69 points from its previous close.
On Tuesday, the KOSPI had ended in negative territory with a small loss on geopolitical concerns. The buoyancy in the market on the positive closing on Wall Street and hopes of economic recovery fizzled out on the nuke threat from North Korea, and a late-day selling dragged the indices into red.
Bank stocks Woori Finance and KB Financial are currently trading lower by 6.5% and 4.5%, respectively. Shinhan Financial is down with a 2.2% loss. However, bucking the trend, Korea Exchange Bank is gaining 2.8%.
In the shipbuilding space, Samsung Heavy Industries is up 5.2%, Hyundai Heavy Industries is trading higher by 3.5% and Daewoo Shipbuilding is up 3.65%. Bulk carrier STX Pan Ocean, which had some bright sessions recently, is currently trading flat.
Among automobile stocks, Kia Motors and Hyundai Motor are trading flat while Ssangyong Motors is up by 0.8%. Technology stocks are mostly off their early highs. However, LG Electronics is trading firm with a gain of 1.7%.
SK Holdings and S-Oil, the oil giants, are down by 1.3% and 0.5%, respectively. Energy stock KEPCO is down by 2%. Among steel stocks, Hyundai Steel and POSCO are down with modest losses. Airlines and telecom stocks are exhibiting a mixed trend.
On Wall Street, stocks extended their winning streak to a fourth successive session on Tuesday with traders reacting positively to the better-than-expected pending home sales numbers for the month of April.
The major averages ended the day modestly higher, although well off their best levels of the day. The Dow finished up by 19.43 points or 0.2 percent at 8,741, the Nasdaq closed up 8.12 points or 0.4 percent, at 1,837 and the S&P 500 finished up by 1.87 points or 0.2 percent at 945.
In the Asia-Pacific region, stock markets had finished on a mixed note with profit taking wiping off early gains. Major European markets also turned in a mixed performance. The French CAC 40 Index slipped by less than a tenth of a percent, while the German DAX Index rose by a minute margin. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index dropped by 0.7 percent.
Oil prices were flat on Tuesday amid choppy trading as investors awaited the Energy Information Administration's weekly inventory report. Crude oil prices finished at US$68.55 per barrel, down US$0.03 on the choppy session. Prices touched as high as US$69.05 after hitting a low of US$67.50.
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