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South Korea Stock Market May Extend Winning Streak

The South Korea stock market has finished higher in six straight sessions, climbing more than 60 points or 3 percent along the way. The KOSPI remains just beneath the 2,145-point plateau and it may add to its winnings again on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on growing optimism for a trade deal between the United States and China. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are tipped to open in similar fashion.

The KOSPI finished barely higher on Thursday following gains from the industrials and mixed performances from the financial shares and technology stocks.

For the day, the index was up just 0.14 points or 0.01 percent to finish at 2,144.29 after trading between 2,135.45 and 2,147.01. Volume was 418 million shares worth 5 trillion won. There were 408 gainers and 391 decliners.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial shed 0.23 percent, while KB Financial eased 0.12 percent, Hana Financial collected 0.28 percent, Samsung Electronics lost 0.75 percent, LG Electronics gained 0.58 percent, LG Display plummeted 3.41 percent, SK Hynix rose 0.12 percent, POSCO perked 0.23 percent, SK Telecom accelerated 2.32 percent, KEPCO added 0.56 percent, Kia Motors climbed 1.29 percent and Hyundai Motors and Samsung SDI were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks opened higher on Thursday, faded a bit as the day progressed but still finished firmly in the green.

The Dow added 182.24 points or 0.66 percent to 27,674.80, while the NASDAQ gained 23.89 points or 0.28 percent and the S&P 500 rose 8.40 points or 0.27 percent to 3,085.18.

The early strength on Wall Street followed signs of progress in U.S.-China trade talks after a spokesman for the Chinese Commerce Ministry said the U.S. and China have agreed to lift existing tariffs in phases.

In U.S. economic news, the Labor Department reported a bigger than expected decrease in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended November 2.

Crude oil prices moved higher on Thursday, rebounding smartly after suffering a setback in the previous session. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for December ended up $0.80 or 1.4 percent at $57.15 a barrel.

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