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Speco Leads Defense Stocks Higher on North Missiles: Seoul Mover

May 20 (Bloomberg) -- Speco Co. led gains among South Korean defense-related stocks after North Korea test-fired four short-range missiles over the weekend.

Speco, a maker of defense products such as fin stabilizers and water jets, rose 9.5 percent to 3,640 won at 11:50 a.m. in Seoul, poised for its biggest gain since April 9. Victek Co., a manufacturer of electronics warfare equipment, increased 6.6 percent, while Firstec Co., a maker of components for helicopters and armored vehicles, rose 2.5 percent.

North Korea launched a short-range guided missile into waters off its eastern coast yesterday afternoon in defiance of international sanctions and diplomatic efforts to convince the totalitarian nation to return to talks. The North fired three more projectiles on May 18.

“The defense-related stocks are definitely rising due to the ongoing North Korea threats,” said Park Sung Hyun, an analyst at Hanwha Investment & Securities. “They will probably head back down because the unstable political situation in the Korean peninsula is unlikely to be sustained in the long term.”

South Korea’s benchmark Kospi index rose 0.1 percent to 1,988.97.

013810@KS 065450@KS 010820@KS

To contact the reporter on this story: Sharon Cho in Seoul at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at

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