(RTTNews) - The South Korea stock market turned emphatically lower again on Thursday, one session after it had ended the two-day slide in which it had tumbled more than 90 points or 4.2 percent. The KOSPI now rests just beneath the 2,150-point plateau although it's predicted to bounce higher on Friday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests bargain hunting following heavy selling a day earlier on coronavirus fears. The European markets were down and the U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are tipped to follow the latter lead.
The KOSPI finished sharply lower on Thursday following losses from the technology stocks and industrials, while the financials came in mixed.
For the day, the index dropped 37.28 points or 1.71 percent to finish at 2,148.00 after trading between 2,139.72 and 2,187.45. Volume was 594 million shares worth 7 trillion won. There were 752 decliners and 112 gainers.
Among the actives, Shinhan Financial collected 0.25 percent, while KB Financial retreated 1.02 percent, Samsung Electronics sank 3.21 percent, LG Electronics eased 0.19 percent, LG Chem jumped 2.54 percent, SK Hynix tumbled 3.98 percent, POSCO lost 0.88 percent, SK Telecom tanked 1.51 percent, KEPCO shed 1.54 percent, Hyundai Motors skidded 2.67 percent, Kia Motors dropped 1.41 percent and Hana Financial was unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks opened lower on Thursday but saw a notable recovery in the afternoon and ended firmly in the green.
The Dow added 124.21 points or 0.43 percent to 28,858.66, while the NASDAQ rose 23.80 points or 0.26 percent to 9,298.96 and the S&P 500 was up 10.65 points or 0.33 percent to 3,284.05.
The recovery on Wall Street came after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a global health emergency. Earlier in the day, the U.S. confirmed its first human-to human transmission of the virus, which has killed 171 people in China and has spread to as many as 18 other countries.
In economic news, the Commerce Department said U.S. economic growth in the fourth quarter Q4 continued at the same pace as in the previous quarter. Also, the Labor Department said first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits decreased from an upwardly revised level last week.
Crude oil prices declined sharply Thursday amid concerns over the outlook for energy demand on coronavirus concerns. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for March ended down $1.19 or 2.2 percent at $52.14 a barrel, the lowest settlement since August 7.
Closer to home, South Korea will see December numbers for industrial production and retail sales later this morning. In November, industrial production was down 0.5 percent on month and 0.3 percent on year, while retail sales advanced 3.0 percent on month and 3.7 percent on year.
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