SK Telecom Co., the biggest of South Korea’s three wireless operators, led companies that usually pay high dividends lower in Seoul trading as they trade without the rights to the year’s final payments.
SK Telecom dropped 5.1 percent to 150,500 won as of 10:02 a.m. on the Korea Exchange, making it the worst performer on the MSCI Asia Pacific Index. KT Corp., the second-largest mobile-phone carrier, slipped 4.8 percent to 35,700 won, while the benchmark Kospi index lost 0.1 percent.
Along with the telecom operators, Industrial Bank of Korea, the biggest South Korean lender to small and medium-sized companies, and KT&G Corp., the country’s biggest tobacco maker, had the highest dividend yields among South Korea’s 50 largest publicly-traded companies, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
“This is the ex-dividend day and it’s weighing on telecom stocks that usually pay relatively high dividends,” Yi Dong Sub, an analyst at SK Securities Co., said by telephone today.
Industrial Bank of Korea slipped 2.5 percent, while KT&G retreated 2.4 percent. S-Oil Corp., South Korea’s third-largest oil refiner, fell 1.4 percent.