South Korea Stock Market May Extend Its Gains

(RTTNews) - The South Korea stock market has alternated between positive and negative finishes through the last six trading days since the end of the four-day winning streak in which it had gathered almost 50 points or 2.2 percent. The KOSPI now rests just above the 2,230-point plateau and it may add to its winnings on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is firm on global trade hopes and a jump in crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian markets are tipped to follow suit.

The KOSPI finished barely higher on Friday as gains from the technology stocks were tempered by weakness from the industrials and a mixed picture from the financial sector.

For the day, the index added 1.84 points or 0.08 percent to finish at the daily high of 2,230.50 after moving as low as 2,217.0801. Volume was 401.74 million shares worth 4.54 trillion won. There were 447 decliners and 366 gainers.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial gained 0.92 percent, while KB Financial collected 0.22 percent, Hana Financial lost 0.50 percent, Samsung Electronics added 0.43 percent, LG Electronics perked 0.27 percent, LG Display was up 0.24 percent, Hyundai Motor advanced 0.83 percent, SK Telecom rose 0.77 percent, KEPCO surged 3.15 percent, POSCO shed 0.91 percent and Kia Motors and SK Hynix were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is upbeat as stocks moved mostly higher on Friday, hitting their best closing levels in more than three months.

The Dow added 181.18 points or 0.70 percent to 26,031, while the NASDAQ gained 72.75 points or 0.91 percent to 7,527.54 and the S&P rose 17.79 points or 0.64 percent to 2,792.67. For the week, the Dow and the S&P both gained 0.6 percent and the NASDAQ rose 0.7 percent.

The strength on Wall Street came as traders expressed optimism about ongoing trade talks between the U.S. and China as Chinese negotiators extended their visit to Washington in an effort to build on the progress made during the talks.

Crude oil futures ended higher on Friday with traders betting that a positive outcome from U.S.-China trade discussions will result in increased demand for crude. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for April ended up $0.30 or 0.5 percent at $57.26 a barrel, the best settlement since November 12.
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