May 17, 2019 / 1:59 AM / 2 months ago

S.Korea stocks gain on strong U.S. housing data

    * KOSPI index rises, foreigners net sellers
    * Korean won strengthens versus U.S. dollar
    * South Korea benchmark bond yield rises

    SEOUL, May 17 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean financial
** South Korea's KOSPI stock index         rose on Friday after
closing lower in the previous session, as solid U.S. economic
index offered a respite from the prolonged trade friction
between the United States and China. The Korean won and the
benchmark bond yield rose.
** U.S. housing starts increased more than expected in April and
activity in the prior month was stronger than initially thought,
suggesting declining mortgage rates were providing some support
to the struggling housing market.                  
** As of 0145 GMT, the Seoul stock market's main KOSPI index
rose 9.88 points, or 0.48%, to 2,077.57. The index is set to
lose about 1.6% for week, marking a second consecutive week of
** Foreigners were net sellers of 89.1 billion won ($74.88
million) worth of shares on the main board. 
** The won was quoted at 1,190.5 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.08% higher than its previous
close at 1,191.5, after hitting its fresh low in 28 months at
1192.8 per dollar. 
** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at 1,190.7 per
U.S. dollar, up 0.1% from the previous day, while in one-year
non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract
              was quoted at 1,189.2 per dollar.
** MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
                was up 0.26%, after U.S. stocks rose
           . Japanese stocks         rose 1.16%.
** The KOSPI has risen 1.79% so far this year, and fell 5.0% in
the previous 30 trading sessions.
** The current price-to-earnings ratio is 12.10, the dividend
yield is 1.28% and the market capitalisation is 1,242.04
trillion won.
** The trading volume during the session on the KOSPI index
        was 219.95 million shares, and of the total traded
issues of 890, the number of advancing shares was 524.
** The won has lost 6.3% against the U.S dollar this year so
** In money and debt markets, June futures on three-year
treasury bonds         fell 0.04 points to 109.65, while the
3-month Certificate of Deposit rate was quoted at 1.84%.
** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 1.1
basis points to 1.686%, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose
by 2.0 basis points to 1.840%.

($1 = 1,189.8500 won)

 (Reporting by Hayoung Choi; editing by Rashmi Aich)
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