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Seoul shares edge down; caution rules before Jackson Hole

Published: August 28, 2012 | 7:57 am
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* Stocks expected to tread water throughout week-analysts
* Samsung Elec up 1.3 pct, Samsung group shares rebound
* Apple suppliers lose ground after Monday’s climb

Seoul shares inched down Tuesday as investors largely stayed on the sidelines to await a global gathering of central bankers late this week for clues about further stimulus plans.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 0.08 percent to close at 1,916.33 points. This month, the index has gained 1.8 percent.

Analysts said the main board is expected to keep treading water before U.S. Federal Chairman Ben Bernanke meets with central bankers at Jackson Hole, Wyoming on Friday.

Kim Ji-hyung, an analyst at Hanyang Securities, said he expects the market to trade in a narrow band this week and perhaps rise next week, depending on what unfolds in Wyoming.

“A direct mention of further quantitative easing is not expected at Jackson Hole, but with the U.S. economy avoiding major snags, investors won’t be too disappointed,” Kim said.

Market heavyweight Samsung Electronics was up 1.27 percent, after Monday’s 7.5 percent tumble following a U.S. patent ruling favouring rival Apple Inc.The Monday plunge cut the company’s market capitalization by $12 billion.

On Tuesday, many Samsung group shares that also fell the previous day rebounded, with Samsung Electro-Mechanics up 2.46 percent while Samsung SDI rose 0.35 percent.

Meanwhile, local Apple suppliers which had gains on Monday lost ground, with LG Display falling 0.37 percent and LG Innotek sliding 0.75 percent.

Foreign investors were net sellers of 139.4 billion won ($123 million) of KOSPI shares, while local institutional investors sold a net 8.4 billion won.

Decliners slightly outnumbered gainers 410 to 394, while the KOSPI 200 benchmark of core stocks fell 0.08 percent. The junior, small-cap heavy KOSDAQ climbed 1.15 percent.

Move on day -0.08 percent

12-month high 2,049.28 3 April 2012

12-month low 1,644.11 26 Sept 2011

Change on yr +5 percent

All-time high 2,231.47 27 April 2011

All-time low 93.10 6 January 1981


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