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Seoul stocks expected to move tightly amid earnings season

2018/07/14 10:00

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SEOUL, July 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korean shares are expected to move in a box range as investors await second quarter earnings results from major listed companies, analysts said Saturday.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) closed at 2,310.9 on Friday, up 1.67 percent from a week ago.

This week, the Seoul bourse started higher, led by gains in large-cap tech and financial shares on the back of solid U.S. economic data.

Stocks, however, tumbled Wednesday after the United States announced its plan to impose an additional US$200 billion of tariffs on Chinese imports.

Shares rebounded as fears over the trade war eased, with China not taking any immediate retaliatory actions. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin further boosted investor sentiment by signaling Washington's willingness to engage in talks with Beijing.

Next week, shares will likely see mixed trading based on different forecasts over firms' second quarter earnings, according to analysts. Major companies, such as top steelmaker POSCO and chip giant SK hynix, are set to release their quarterly earnings later this month.

"As Trump has rolled out most of the measures he can take (regarding the trade dispute), if there is no other retaliatory action taken by China, it is unlikely that any other related news that can have huge impact on the market will emerge until the announced tariffs are actually imposed," said Cho Byung-hyun, an analyst at Yuanta Securities Korea.

China is set to release its second quarter gross domestic product (GDP) on Monday.