The South Korea stock market has finished higher in five straight sessions, spiking more than 150 points or 6 percent along the way. The KOSPI now rests just above the 2,415-point plateau although its due for consolidation on Monday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is soft, with profit taking expected following last week’s election run in the United States, while varying earnings news and oil process may lend an air of volatility. The European and U.S. markets were slightly lower and the Asian bourses figure to open in similar fashion.
The KOSPI finished slightly higher on Friday as gains from the chemical and technology stocks were capped by weakness from the automobile producers and a mixed picture from the financials.
For the day, the index was up 2.71 points or 0.11 percent to finish at 2,416.50 after trading between 2,404.97 and 2,431.11. Volume was 812 million shares worth 12.4 trillion won. There were 533 decliners and 294 gainers.
Among the actives, Shinhan Financial collected 0.32 percent, while KB Financial lost 0.58 percent, Hana Financial climbed 1.09 percent, Samsung Electronics shed 0.33 percent, LG Electronics added 0.69 percent, SK Hynix rose 0.23 percent, LG Chem skyrocketed 6.35 percent, Lotte Chemical rallied 2.04 percent, S-Oil eased 0.17 percent, SK Innovation spiked 2.54 percent, POSCO perked 0.44 percent, SK Telecom jumped 1.79 percent, KEPCO dipped 0.25 percent, Hyundai Motor plunged 2.57 percent and Kia Motors dropped 1.15 percent.
The lead from Wall Street is murky as stocks opened sharply lower on Friday but rallied to finish largely unchanged.
The Dow shed 66.80 points or 0.24 percent to finish at 28,323.40, while the NASDAQ rose 4.33 points or 0.04 percent to end at 11,895.23 and the S&P 500 eased 1.01 points or 0.03 percent to close at 3,509.44. For the week, The Dow jumped 6.9 percent, the NASDAQ surged 9 percent and the S&P spiked 7.1 percent.
The early weakness on Wall Street was partly due to profit taking following the strong upward move seen over the past several sessions.
The early selling pressure was offset by a closely watched report from the Labor Department showing stronger than expected job growth in October, while the jobless rate fell 1 percent.
The markets were also reacting to the continued uncertainty about the U.S. presidential election – although that was cleared up on Saturday when Democrat Joe Biden was projected as the winner.
Crude oil futures ended sharply lower on Friday, weighed down by rising concerns over outlook for energy demand due to the continued global surge in coronavirus cases. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for December ended down $1.65 or 4.3 percent at $37.14 a barrel.
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