KOSPI May Reclaim 2,500-Point Level On Friday

(RTTNews) - The South Korea stock market has alternated between positive and negative finishes through the last eight trading days since the end of the two-day losing streak in which it had slipped almost 20 points or 0.8 percent. The KOSPI now sits just above the 2,490-point plateau and it's likely to bounce higher again on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to higher ahead of key employment data from the United States later today. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were up and the Asian markets also figure to track higher.

The KOSPI finished slightly lower on Thursday following losses from the financial shares and mixed performances from the technology, chemical and industrial sectors.

For the day, the index dipped 3.31 points or 0.13 percent to finish at 2,492.07. Volume was 440.6 million shares worth 8.03 trillion won. There were 525 decliners and 354 gainers.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial dropped 0.95 percent, while KB Financial slumped 1.15 percent, Hana Financial skidded 1.06 percent, Samsung Electronics fell 0.28 percent, Samsung SDI spiked 2.31 percent, LG Electronics plummeted 4.70 percent, Naver slid 0.47 percent, LG Chem shed 0.53 percent, Lotte Chemical rallied 1.43 percent, S-Oil stumbled 1.64 percent, SK Innovation lost 0.52 percent, POSCO sank 1.00 percent, SK Telecom tumbled 1.76 percent, KEPCO soared 2.56 percent, Hyundai Mobis gained 0.45 percent, Hyundai Motor eased 0.16 percent, Kia Motors improved 0.71 percent and SK Hynix was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as the major averages opened higher on Thursday and largely stayed that way throughout the session.

The Dow gained 62.95 points or 0.17 percent to finish at 36,117.38, while the NASDAQ surged 193.28 points or 1.37 percent to end at 14,339.99 and the S&P 500 added 36.25 points or 0.80 percent to close at 4,585.59.

The strength on Wall Street reflected ongoing optimism about the outlook for interest rates ahead of the release of the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report later today.

The jobs report could have a significant impact on the outlook for interest rates ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting next week.

While the Fed is widely expected to leave interest rates unchanged, traders will be looking to the jobs data to provide further evidence the central bank could cut rates as soon as March 2024.

Oil futures settled slightly lower Thursday amid lingering uncertainty about the outlook for energy demand due to global economic slowdown. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for January ended down $0.04 at $69.34 a barrel.

Closer to home, South Korea will see October figures for current account later this morning; in September, the current account surplus was $5.42 billion.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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