The South Korea stock market has closed lower now in back-to-back sessions, although it has given away just over 5 points or 0.3 percent in the process. The KOSPI finished just above the 1,840-point plateau, and now investors are expecting continued if mild selling pressure when the market kicks off trade on Friday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower on Friday, thanks to perpetual concerns about Europe plus soft economic data from the U.S. The European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said on Thursday that the bank cannot fix the turmoil in the currency bloc and urged Eurozone leaders to come up with a 'vision' for years ahead. In addition, Ireland is voting in a referendum, although opinion polls show that the country will back the new German-backed EU fiscal treaty. Across the pond, the U.S. saw weak reports on private sector job growth and initial jobless claims. The European and U.S. markets were mostly lower, and the Asian bourses are tipped to follow suit.
The KOSPI finished barely lower on Thursday as losses from the technology stocks were offset by support from the automobile producers.
For the day, the index eased 1.39 points or 0.08 percent to finish at 1,843.47 after trading between 1,813.01 and 1,843.49. Volume was 439 million shares worth 4.55 trillion won. There were 446 decliners and 384 gainers.
Among the decliners, Samsung Electronics shed 1.22 percent, while LG Electronics dropped 1.64 percent, LG Chem lost 2.35 percent, SK Innovation plummeted 2.78 percent, POSCO fell 0.14 percent and Hyundai Heavy Industries plunged 1.84 percent.
Moving higher, Hyundai Motor collected 0.41 percent and Kia Motors jumped 2.77 percent.
The lead from Wall Street suggests mild negativity as stocks moved sharply lower in early trading on Thursday, although the markets later staged a notable recovery. Selling pressure re-emerged in late-day trading, however, resulting in a lower close.
The early sell-off followed a slew of U.S. economic data, including reports providing further signs of sluggishness in the labor market. Considerable selling pressure was generated by a report from payroll processor ADP showing weaker than expected private sector job growth.
ADP said private sector employment rose by 133,000 jobs in May following a downwardly revised increase of 113,000 jobs in April. Economists had expected an increase of about 154,000 jobs.
A separate report from the Labor Department showed that initial jobless claims rose to 383,000 in the week ended May 26 from the previous week's revised figure of 373,000. Jobless claims had been expected to come in unchanged at the 370,000 originally reported for the previous week.
The Commerce Department also reported slower than previously estimated first quarter GDP growth, dragging stocks lower along with a report showing that Chicago-area business activity expanded at a much slower rate in May.
The afternoon rebound was spurred by reports that the International Monetary Fund is in talks to provide a bailout to Spain, although the IMF later denied the reports. The pullback that followed came as traders expressed caution ahead of Friday's closely watched monthly employment report.
The major averages all ended the day in the red but well off their worst levels of the day. The Dow edged down 26.41 points or 0.2 percent to finish at 12,393.45, while the NASDAQ fell 10.02 points or 0.4 percent to end at 2,827.34 and the S&P 500 slipped 2.99 points or 0.2 percent to 1,310.33.
On the economic front, industrial production in South Korea climbed a seasonally adjusted 0.9 percent on month in April, Statistics Korea said on Thursday, blowing past expectations for a contraction of 0.9 percent following the upwardly revised 2.9 percent contraction in March. On a yearly basis, industrial production was unchanged, missing expectations for an increase of 0.3 percent following the upwardly revised 0.7 percent increase in March.
by RTT Staff Writer
For comments and feedback: firstname.lastname@example.org