March 12, 2020 / 3:20 AM / 18 days ago

S.Korean shares tumble to 4-1/2-yr low as virus fears deepen

    * Kospi plummets to lowest since Aug 2015
    * Korean won weakens versus U.S. dollar
    * South Korea benchmark bond yield falls

    SEOUL, March 12 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean
financial markets:
 
** South Korean shares tumbled to a 4-1/2-year low on Thursday
as worries about the economic fallout from coronavirus outbreak
deepened after the World Health Organization declared it a
pandemic and United States suspended all travel from Europe. The
won weakened, while the benchmark bond yield rose.
 
** South Korea on Thursday reported 114 new cases of the
coronavirus, as well as six more deaths, bringing the country's
total number of infections to 7,869, with 66 deaths.
 
** As of 0226 GMT, the Seoul stock market's main KOSPI        
fell 76.94 points, or 4.03%, to 1,831.33.
 
** U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Wednesday the United
States will suspend all travel from Europe, except from the
United Kingdom, to the United States for 30 days starting on
Friday.             
 
** The World Health Organization described the new coronavirus
as a pandemic for the first time on Wednesday, adding that Italy
and Iran were now on the frontline of the disease and other
countries would soon join them.
 
** The premium for South Korean credit default swaps for the
5-year government bonds                 spiked to the highest
level since March 2018.
 
** Foreigners were net sellers of 478.6 billion won worth of
shares on the main board. 
 
** The won was quoted at 1,200.2 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.60% lower than its previous
close at 1,193.0.
 
** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at 1,199.6 per
U.S. dollar, down 0.6% from the previous day, while in
non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract
              was quoted at 1,198.1 per dollar.
 
** MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
                was down 3.56%, after S&P500        lost 4.89%.
Japanese stocks         fell 4.86%.
 
** The KOSPI has fallen 16.67% so far this year, and lost 12.7%
in the previous 30 trading sessions.
 
** The trading volume during the session in the KOSPI index
        was 393.32 million shares. Of the total traded issues of
903, the number of advancing shares was 19.
 
** The won has lost 3.6% against the dollar so far this year.
 
** In money and debt markets, March futures on three-year
treasury bonds         rose 0.02 points to 111.45.

 (Reporting by Cynthia Kim; Editing by Aditya Soni)
  
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