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Hyundai, Kia Slide on Profit Outlook as Sales Drop: Seoul Mover

Dec. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp., South Korea’s biggest automakers, tumbled in Seoul trading as falling car sales dampened the outlook for fourth-quarter earnings.

Hyundai’s shares posted their steepest loss since July 12, sliding 4.2 percent to 239,000 won at the close on the Korea Exchange. Kia slid 5.2 percent to 56,500 won, the most since Nov. 5, 2012, while the benchmark Kospi index fell 1.1 percent.

Seoul-based Hyundai’s car sales dropped 2.8 percent last month from a year earlier to 408,533 units in a regulatory filing yesterday. Kia also said its sales for last month slipped 0.3 percent to 257,473 units.

“Shares are falling today on concerns that fourth-quarter earnings may be impacted by faltering sales of the country’s two largest carmakers,” Im Jeong Jae, a Seoul-based fund manager at Shinhan BNP Asset Management Co., which oversees $32 billion, said by phone.

Hyundai and Kia struggled to sell more cars in their home turf as domestic sales slid 12 percent last month, according to the filings. Hyundai’s overseas sales dropped 1.3 percent, while Kia’s increased 2.2 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sharon Cho in Seoul at ccho28@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chan Tien Hin at thchan@bloomberg.net; Michael Patterson at mpatterson10@bloomberg.net

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