The Kospi index fell 5.47, or 0.3 percent, to 2,089.48 at the close in Seoul, retreating from a record close yesterday. Today was the expiration of options contracts.
Banks: Hana Financial Group Inc. (086790 KS) rose 3.8 percent to 46,650 won. Shinhan Financial Group Co. (055550 KS) added 3.1 percent to 52,600 won. KB Financial Group Inc. (105560 KS) rose 3.1 percent to 60,200 won. The shares gained after South Korea’s National Pension Service won approval to own more than 10 percent of local banks and financial holding companies and after the Bank of Korea raised its benchmark interest rate.
“Expectations that higher rates may help banks increase their margins and a possible share purchase by National Pension are being catalysts for bank stocks today,” said Kim Young Joon, a fund manager at NH-CA Asset Management in Seoul, which manages $9 billion in assets.
Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (042660 KS), the world’s third-largest shipyard, climbed 1.6 percent to 38,550 won, rising for a third day. The company expects orders for drilling vessels and offshore platforms to increase 18 percent this year, helped by higher fuel prices. Contracts for drill ships, semi-submersibles and offshore platforms may rise to $6 billion this year from $5.1 billion in 2010, said Nam Sang Tae, Daewoo Shipbuilding’s chief executive officer.
Hynix Semiconductor Inc. (000660 KS), the world’s second- largest computer-memory chipmaker, added 3.4 percent to 27,250 won, the highest level since June 21. Mirae Asset Securities Co. raised its share-price estimate to 33,000 won from 30,000 won, saying the company will benefit from potential industry restructuring.
Samsung Securities Co. (016360 KS), a South Korean brokerage, gained 5.5 percent to 94,000 won, rising for a sixth day. Shinhan Investment Corp. raised its share-price estimate of Samsung Securities to 120,000 won, citing the company’s strength in “wrap accounts” or personalized portfolios.
Tong Yang Major Corp. (001520 KS), a cement maker, tumbled 10 percent to 2,450 won, the most since Nov. 17. The company will sell new shares worth 325.8 billion won ($292 million), according to a filing.
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