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South Korea Bourse May Run Out Of Steam

The South Korea stock market has moved higher in five straight sessions, soaring more than 65 points or 3.3 percent along the way. The KOSPI now rests just above the 2,030-point plateau although weakness from the technology stocks may weigh on Wednesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests mild upside on expectations of further stimulus. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were mixed and little changed and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.

The KOSPI finished modestly higher on Tuesday following gains from the financial shares and industrials, while the technology stocks came in mixed.

For the day, the index rose 12.53 points or 0.62 percent to finish at 2,032.08 after trading between 2,021.58 and 2,034.28. Volume was 496 million shares worth 4.37 trillion won. There were 554 gainers and 256 decliners.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial jumped 1.69 percent, while KB Financial soared 3.28 percent, Hana Financial collected 2.49 percent, Samsung Electronics added 0.21 percent, LG Electronics surged 5.87 percent, Samsung SDI tumbled 3.53 percent, SK Hynix skidded 1.42 percent, POSCO perked 2.53 percent, SK Telecom advanced 1.27 percent, Hyundai Motors rose 0.79 percent, Kia Motors added 0.23 percent and LG Display was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street continues to be murky as stocks saw another lackluster performance on Tuesday, eventually closing mixed and roughly flat for the third consecutive session.

The Dow added 73.92 points or 0.28 percent to 26,909.43, while the NASADQ fell 3.28 points or 0.04 percent to 8,084.16 and the S&P 500 rose 0.96 points or 0.03 percent to 2,979.39.

The early weakness on Wall Street reflected uncertainty ahead of the European Central Bank's monetary policy decision on Thursday as well as next week's Federal Reserve meeting. Both the ECB and the Fed are expected to cut interest rates in reaction to indications of a global slowdown.

The weaker than expected jobs data released last Friday raised concerns about the economic outlook but also reinforced expectations of another interest rate cut by the Fed next week.

Crude oil prices edged lower on Tuesday, with traders taking profits after recent strong gains and looking ahead to weekly inventory reports. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for October were down $0.45 or 0.8 percent at $57.40 a barrel.

Closer to home, South Korea will release unemployment data for August later today; in July, the jobless rate came in at 4.0 percent.

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