Shares of the following companies had unusual moves in South Korea trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses, and prices are as of 9:21 a.m. in Seoul.
The Kospi Index fell 7.39, or 0.4 percent, to 1,956.04.
Builders: Daewoo Engineering & Construction Co. (047040 KS) lost 3 percent to 11,200 won. GS Engineering & Construction Corp. (006360 KS) lost 1.9 percent to 101,000 won. Builders declined amid speculation unrest in the Middle East will hurt demand in the region or delay ongoing projects. U.S. officials will meet with their foreign counterparts in Geneva to discuss the fate of Libya, including measures to pressure Muammar Qaddafi out of power while building ties to opposition leaders.
“Sentiment towards construction companies continues to be weak because of the Middle East concerns,” said Kim Young Joon, head of equities at NH-CA Asset Management Co. in Seoul, which manages the equivalent of $8.8 billion in assets. “But the possibility that builders don’t get paid for their work or will face order cancellations is very, very low. Investors should use the decline as a bottom-fishing opportunity.”
Daesun Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. (031990 KS) fell 4.3 percent to 22,500 won. Prosea Shipping Co. canceled contracts for two bulk ships worth 76.9 billion won ($68 million). The vessels were ordered in 2008 and was scheduled for delivery later this year, the South Korean shipyard said in a filing.