S.Korean stocks rise 1% on virus treatment hopes, drop in new cases

* KOSPI rises, foreigners net buyers

* Korean won weakens against U.S. dollar

* South Korea benchmark bond yield falls

* For the midday report, please click

SEOUL, Aug 24 (Reuters) – Round-up of South Korean financial markets:

** South Korean shares rose just over 1% on Monday, in line with Asian peers, as the U.S. drug regulator’s authorisation of the use of blood plasma from recovered patients as a COVID-19 treatment lifted sentiment, while new domestic cases slowed. Both the Korean won and the benchmark bond yield weakened.

** The benchmark KOSPI closed up 25.24 points, or 1.10%, to 2,329.83.

** The sub-index for pharmaceutical sector jumped 2.9%, following the authorisation from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration on Sunday.

** South Korea reported 266 new infections on Monday, down from 397 on Sunday, bringing the national tally to 17,655 with 309 deaths.

** South Korea’s central bank chief said the bank would maintain its accommodative monetary policy as a recent surge in infections will likely weaken the country’s economic recovery. The bank will hold its monetary policy meeting on Thursday.

** “There are possibilities that the country may raise the social-distancing guideline to (the toughest) level three,” said Na Jeong-hwan, analyst at DS Investment & Securities, adding the market awaits U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s speech from Jackson Hole symposium.

** Foreigners were net buyers of 198.6 billion won ($166.97 million) worth of shares on the main board.

** The won ended trading at 1,189.1 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform, 0.24% lower than its previous close at 1,186.3.

** In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,189.5 per dollar, up 0.2% from the previous day, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,189.4.

** In money and debt markets, September futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.10 points to 112.17.

** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield fell by 2.8 basis points to 0.826%, while the benchmark 10-year yield fell by 3.1 basis points to 1.379%. ($1 = 1,189.4600 won) (Reporting by Joori Roh; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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