July 17, 2018 / 2:01 AM / 3 months ago

S.Korea stocks steady, won gains ahead of Powell's testimony

    * KOSPI index flat, foreigners sell
    * Korean won rises versus U.S. dollar
    * South Korea bond yields down

    SEOUL, July 17 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean
financial markets:
** South Korea's KOSPI stock index         was little changed 
on Tuesday amid a sharp decline in overnight crude oil prices,
while the won rose as investors awaited U.S. Federal Reserve
Chairman Jerome Powell's first congressional testimony for any
clues on the pace of interest rate hikes. Bond yields fell.
            
    
** At 01:29 GMT, the KOSPI was up 0.65 points, or 0.03 percent,
at 2,302.64. Shares of LG Chem             fell more than 3
percent, while SK Innovation             and Lotte Chemical
            dropped 2.0 percent and 3.2 percent, respectively, 
as oil prices tumbled overnight.
    
** Asiana Airlines             gained as much as 22.9 percent
after a report that conglomerate SK Group is studying a takeover
of the airline. Shares of other airlines including Korean Air
Lines             also rose following a sharp decline in
overnight crude oil prices.             
    
** The won was quoted at 1,127.6 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.14 percent firmer than its
previous close at 1,129.2.
    
** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at 1,127.8 per
U.S. dollar, down 0.01 percent from the previous day, while in
one-year non-deliverable forwards             it was being
transacted at 1,111.25 per dollar.
    
** MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
                was down 0.12 percent, after U.S. stocks ended
the previous session with losses            . Japanese stocks
        rose 0.6 percent.
    
** The KOSPI is down around 6.7 percent so far this year, and
down by 4.99 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 170,484,000 shares and, of the total traded issues
of 885, the number of advancing shares was 370.
    
** Foreigners were net sellers of 29,955 million won worth of
shares.
    
** The U.S dollar has risen 5.76 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 1,133.98 on July 13, 2018.
    
** In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year
treasury bonds         rose 0.02 points to 108.19.
    
** The Korean 3-month Certificate of Deposit benchmark rate was
quoted at 1.65 percent, while the benchmark 3-year Korean
treasury bond yielded 2.087 percent, lower than the previous
day's 2.09 percent.

 (Reporting by Joori Roh; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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