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KOSPI Poised To Extend Wednesday's Losses

The South Korea stock market headed south again on Wednesday, one day after snapping the four-day losing streak in which it had tumbled almost 100 points or 4.2 percent. The KOSPI now rests just beneath the 2,350-point plateau and it may take further damage on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is soft on renewed recession fears following another big rate hike from the FOMC. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were down and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The KOSPI finished modestly lower on Wednesday following losses from the financial shares, technology stocks and industrials.

For the day, the index dropped 20.64 points or 0.87 percent to finish at 2,347.21 after trading between 2,341.79 and 2,360.27. Volume was 367.1 million shares worth 6.2 trillion won. There were 580 decliners and 279 gainers.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial skidded 1.09 percent, while KB Financial surrendered 2.30 percent, Hana Financial retreated 1.79 percent, Samsung Electronics dropped 0.90 percent, Samsung SDI tanked 2.37 percent, LG Electronics stumbled 1.90 percent, Naver tumbled 2.29 percent, LG Chem was down 0.79 percent, Lotte Chemical declined 1.73 percent, SK Innovation fell 0.28 percent, POSCO shed 0.63 percent, SK Telecom eased 0.19 percent, KEPCO gained 0.77 percent, Hyundai Mobis slumped 1.62 percent, Hyundai Motor lost 0.76 percent, Kia Motors sank 0.87 percent and SK Hynix and S-Oil were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street ends up negative as the major averages were steady throughout Wednesday session until the FOMC's rate decision sent them tumbling, closing near daily lows.

The Dow plummeted 522.45 points or 1.70 percent to finish at 30,183.78, while the NASDAQ tumbled 204.86 points or 1.79 percent to close at 11,220.19 and the S&P sank 66.00 points or 1.71 percent to end at 3,789.93.

The late-day volatility came after the Fed raised interest rates by another three-quarters of a percentage point and signaled further aggressive rate hikes for the remainder of the year.

Citing its dual goals of maximum employment and inflation at a rate of 2 percent over the longer run, the Fed decided to raise its target range for the federal funds rate by 75 basis points to 3 to 3.25 percent.

The move marks the third straight 75 basis point rate hike by the Fed and lifts rates to their highest level since early 2008. With inflation remaining elevated, the Fed also said it expects that ongoing interest rate increases will be appropriate.

Crude oil prices drifted lower Wednesday amid concerns about the outlook for energy demand after the Federal Reserve's announcement of a sharp hike in interest rates raised fears about a recession. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for November ended lower by $1.00 or 1.2 percent at $82.94 a barrel.

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