April 10, 2018 / 7:08 AM / 16 days ago

S.Korean stocks, won recoup losses as Xi's speech eases trade jitters

* KOSPI index rises, foreigners sell Korean won inches up versus U.S. dollar South Korea bond yields were up

SEOUL, April 10 (Reuters) - South Korean stocks and the won recouped earlier losses and ended firmer on Tuesday after a speech by Chinese President Xi Jinping eased market worries over an escalating U.S.-China trade dispute.

Xi, in a speech to the Boao forum, promised to open China’s economy further and lower import tariffs on products including cars while sharply widening market access for foreign investors.

While most of the pledges were reiterations of long-promised measures and were short on specifics, markets believed they signalled some room for a possible compromise that could avert the risk of a full-blown trade war.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) closed up 0.3 percent at 2,450.74 points.

The Korean won closed at 1,066.4 against the dollar, 0.1 percent up versus Monday’s close of 1,067.1.

Shares with significant exposure to China posted solid gains.

Lotte Shopping and Hotel Shilla rose 2 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively. Cosmetics shares also gained, with Amorepacific up 1.3 percent and LG Household & Healthcare rising 3.2 percent.

Round-up of South Korean financial markets: ** South Korea’s KOSPI stock index rose on Tuesday. The Korean won was slightly higher and bond yields also rose. ** At 06:30 GMT, the KOSPI was up 6.66 points or 0.27 percent at 2,450.74. ** The won was quoted at 1,066.4 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.07 percent firmer than its previous close at 1,067.1. ** In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,065.01 per U.S. dollar, up 0.35 percent from the previous day, while in one-year non-deliverable forwards it was being asked at 1,051.15 per dollar. ** MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.89 percent, after U.S. stocks ended the previous session with mild gains. Japanese stocks rose 0.54 percent. ** The KOSPI is down around 0.9 percent so far this year, and down by 0.30 percent in the previous 30 days. ** The current price-to-earnings ratio is 12.10, the dividend yield is 1.28 percent and the market capitalisation is 1,242.04 trillion won. ** The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index was 352,614,000 shares, and of the total traded issues of 887, the number of advancing shares was 355. ** Foreigners were net sellers of 119,717 million won worth of shares. ** The U.S dollar has fallen 0.13 percent against the won this year. The won’s high for the year is 1,053.55 per dollar on April 2 2018 and low is 1,098.4 on February 6 2018. ** In money and debt markets, June futures on three-year treasury bonds fell 0.05 points to 107.82. ** The Korean 3-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was quoted at 1.65 percent, while the benchmark 3-year Korean treasury bond yielded 2.186 percent, higher than the previous day’s 2.17 percent. (Reporting by Dahee Kim; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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