RTTNews - After moving in a tight band around the unchanged line for a couple of hours, the Korean market is losing ground on Wednesday with bank, steel and automobile stocks drifting lower on selling pressure. With concerns over global economy weighing in to a marked extent, investors in most of the Asian markets appear none too keen on creating fresh positions today.
The benchmark index KOSPI, which rose to 1,366.60 after opening at 1,361, is currently down in the red at 1,353, down by around 7.50 points from its previous close. The KOSPI had ended 39.17 points or 2.8% down at 1,361 on Tuesday following losses on Wall Street, amid concerns about global recovery.
Bank stocks are mostly trading weak. Korea Exchange Bank is down by 3.5%, Woori Finance is trading lower by 1.4% and KB Financial is down with a loss of 1.2%. Bucking the trend, Shinhan Financial is trading 1.2% up.
Technology stocks are trading firm. Hynix Semiconductor, LG Electronics and LG Display LCD are up by 1.5%-2.5%, while heavyweight Samsung Electronics is trading with a modest 0.5% gain.
Oil and energy stocks are subdued. Among automobile stocks, Kia Motors and Ssangyong Motor are trading lower, while Hyundai Motor is up with a modest gain.
In the steel space, Hyundai Steel is up marginally while POSCO is trading nearly a per cent down. Telecom stocks KT Corp and SK Telecom are down by over 1.5%. Shipbuilders are trading mixed while airlines are seen exhibiting weakness.
Among other markets in the Asia-Pacific region, Australia, Shanghai and Japan are trading weak. Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore and Taiwan are currently trading in positive territory with modest gains. Stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region had ended Tuesday's session with steep losses.
On Tuesday, stocks ended little changed on Wall Street after a choppy ride. Volumes were thin as traders mostly stayed on the sidelines ahead of the release of the Federal Reserve's outlook on interest rates. A lower than expected rise in existing homes sales also weighed to an extent.
The major averages finished on opposite sides of the unchanged mark by only mild margins, unable to sustain any notable moves on the day. While the S&P 500 finished up by 2.06 points or 0.2 percent at 895.10, the Dow slipped by 16.10 points or 0.2 percent to 8,322.91, and the Nasdaq dropped by 1.27 points or 0.1 percent to 1,764.92.
Major European markets finished the day on opposite sides of the unchanged line. The French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index slipped by 0.2 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively, while the German DAX eked out a 0.3 percent gain.
Oil jumped higher on Tuesday as investors looked ahead to the Energy Information Administration's weekly inventory report, which is expected to show a drop in stockpiles on Wednesday. Light sweet crude for August delivery rose to US$69.24 per barrel, up US$1.74 on the session. Prices rallied as high as US$69.68 after falling to as low as US$ 66.37.
With more economic news to follow and the outcome of the Federal Open Market Committee's meeting due, the mood is likely to be cautious on Wednesday.
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