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S.Korea stocks flat despite Samsung Electronics' record high, won edges up
December 7, 2016 / 3:42 AM / a year ago

S.Korea stocks flat despite Samsung Electronics' record high, won edges up

* KOSPI, won trades nearly flat after posting gains in
previous session
    * Samsung Electronics breaks record for session straight

    SEOUL, Dec 7 (Reuters) - South Korean shares were little
changed on Wednesday and the won edge higher as investors
remained cautious ahead of an ECB policy decision this week and
an expected interest rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve late
next week.
     Investors are also awaiting a vote in parliament on Friday
on whether to impeach scandal-hit President Park Geun-hye.
    The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was up
0.1 percent at 1,999.79 points as of 0321 GMT, taking a breather
after posting a 1.4 percent jump on Tuesday. 
    Still, Samsung Electronics rose to a fresh high
for a second straight session, gaining 1.3 percent to 1,772,000
won near midday after the U.S. Supreme court sided with the
company in a smartphone patent fight with Apple overnight.
    The South Korean won was up 0.3 percent at 1,168.1
against the dollar, compared with Tuesday's close to 1,171.4.
    Investors are counting down to any policy changes from the
ECB which has been on a path of monetary easing, while the Fed
has been trying to tighten its policies, keeping the dollar on a
firming trend and pressuring emerging market currencies.    
    A vast majority of investors expect the Fed to raise
interest rates next week and will be looking closely for clues
on its plans for 2017. 
    "Not many investors seems to be making changes in their
positions as big policy meetings are ahead of them. Many are
waiting to gauge outlook for the global economy through policy
decisions," Paik Seok-hyun, a currency analyst at Shinhan Bank
    Offshore investors net purchased 5.3 billion Korean won 
($4.54 million) worth of KOSPI shares near mid-session, while
institutional investors net sold 70.3 billion won of shares.
    Decliners outnumbered advancers 562 to 256.  
    December futures on three-year treasury bonds 
                       0321 GMT    Prev close
 Dollar/won             1,168.1       1,171.4
 Yen/won                10.2308       10.2642
 *KTB futures            109.29        109.24
 KOSPI                 1,999.79      1,989.86
 * Front-month futures on three-year treasury bonds

($1 = 1,167.9000 won)

 (Reporting by Cynthia Kim; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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