May 25, 2018 / 7:03 AM / 3 months ago

S.Korea stocks, won shrug off cancellation of Trump-Kim summit

    * KOSPI weakens marginally, won reverses earlier losses 
    * N.Korea-exposed shares fall, some heavyweights rise
    * Investors hopeful of an eventual summit - analyst

 (Updates with closing figures)
    SEOUL, May 25 (Reuters) - South Korean shares ended slightly
lower and the won pared earlier losses to end higher on Friday,
reacting calmly to President Donald Trump's cancellation of a
summit with North Korea after Pyongyang's measured response to
the announcement.
    Some market players said they remained hopeful there still
will be a summit eventually between Trump and North Korean
leader Kim Jong Un.
    The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI)         closed
down 0.2 percent at 2,460.80 points. For the week, the index
shed 0.7 percent. 
    The won            ended trade at 1,078.0 against the
dollar, up 0.2 percent versus Thursday's close of 1,079.6. The
currency barely moved on a weekly basis.
    "Other than some of those North Korea-related stocks,
overall the KOSPI is doing fine,"  said Seo Sang-young, a stock
analyst at Kiwoom Securities, adding that many investors are
hopeful a summit is not derailed indefinitely.
    North Korea said it hoped for a "Trump-style solution" to
resolve the standoff over its nuclear weapons programme.
            
    Seoul-listed stocks linked to North Korea took hits.
    Hyundai Elevator            , the top shareholder in Hyundai
Asan, which operated tours to North Korea's Mount Kumgang, was
down 16.8 percent. 
    Hyundai Rotem            , manufacturer of railway vehicles,
dropped 19.2 percent. South Korea's railway-related shares had a
big rally when leaders of South Korea and China agreed that
North Korea should be guaranteed economic aid if it were to
undertake complete denuclearisation.             
    But market heavyweights such as Samsung Electronics
            and SK Hynix            , which usually fall when
there are political tensions over the Korean peninsula, were up
2.5 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively.
    Despite the summit cancellation, offshore investors were on
track to be net buyers for the day, purchasing 332.1 billion
Korean won ($308.47 million) of KOSPI shares near mid-session.
    Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones 707 to 144. 
    The spread on South Korea's 5-year credit default swap
               , the contract that offers investor protection
against default on debt - stepped down to 44.01 basis points
after starting at 45.25 basis points.
    June futures on three-year treasury bonds         held
steady 107.85.
    

 (Reporting by Dahee Kim; Additional reporting by Cynthia Kim;
Editing by Richard Borsuk and Sam Holmes)
  
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