* Foreign stock demand to set won's direction this week-
* Foreign investors set to snap 10-day buying spree
SEOUL, March 20 The South Korean won
strengthened for a fourth straight session early on Monday,
touching a five-month high as the greenback slipped further
following the Federal Reserve's less hawkish comments last week.
The won stood at 1,126.7 as of 0233 GMT, up 0.4
percent compared to Friday's close of 1,130.9. It was the
currency's highest intraday level since Oct. 20.
Jeong My-young, a foreign exchange analyst at Samsung
Futures, said the won is on track to post its best gains in
months with few events this week likely to disrupt this.
"Foreign investors' demand for local equities will play a
great role in deciding the won's direction amid the absence of
market momentum," added Jeong.
South Korean shares edged down as investors took profits
after local stocks surged to a near two-year closing high last
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was
down 0.5 percent at 2,153.26 points.
Offshore investors were set to snap their ten-day buying
spree, offloading a net 67.7 billion Korean won ($60.11 million)
worth of KOSPI shares near mid-session, weighing on the index.
Decliners outnumbered gainers 586 to 219.
Netmarble Games Corp, South Korea's largest mobile game
company, said on Monday it plans an initial public offering
(IPO) worth up to 2.66 trillion won ($2.35 billion) in what
could be the country's second-largest listing ever.
Market heavyweight Samsung Electronics dropped
nearly 1 percent, snapping its five-day rally. Lotte Shopping
fell 3.4 percent.
March futures on three-year treasury bonds shed 0.01
point to 109.68.
0233 GMT Prev close
Dollar/won 1,126.7 1,130.9
Yen/won 10.0085/17 10.0203
*KTB futures 109.68 109.69
KOSPI 2,153.26 2,164.58
* Front-month futures on three-year treasury bonds
(Reporting by Dahee Kim; Editing by Sam Holmes)