Seoul shares seen lower as earnings worries persist

Sun Jan 13, 2013 6:31pm EST

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SEOUL, Jan 14 (Reuters) - Seoul shares are likely to lose
ground on Monday after falling 0.76 percent last week, as
concerns linger about corporate earnings and the firming local
currency.
    "A weak global economy has forced brokerages to downgrade
corporate earnings forecasts, which will continue to have a
negative impact on stock markets," said Lee Kyeong-soo, an
analyst at Shinyoung Securities.
    South Korean exporters, which account for most of the stock
market, are grappling with the firming South Korean won and
softening Japanese yen, which should give a price advantage to
their Japanese rivals.
    The South Korean won leapt to its strongest position
against the dollar in 17 months on Friday.  
    The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) 
finished down 0.5 percent at 1,996.67 points on Friday, with the
stronger won weighing on exporters, especially automakers.
 
-------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT @22:28 GMT---------------
                 INSTRUMENT     LAST    PCT CHG   NET CHG    
S&P 500                1,472.05      -0%    -0.070    
USD/JPY                   89.54    0.43%     0.380    
10-YR US TSY YLD     1.866     --       0.000    
SPOT GOLD             $1,661.42    0.00%     0.000    
US CRUDE                 $93.73   -0.10%    -0.090    
DOW JONES              13488.43    0.13%     17.21    
ASIA ADRS               134.82   -0.30%     -0.40    
------------------------------------------------------------->Wa
ll Street ends flat as rally slows, earnings eyed 
>Prices rise in choppy trade; Bernanke eyed         
>Euro soars to highest vs dollar since April        
>Oil falls as gasoline off 2 pct on import talk     

---STOCKS TO WATCH--- 
    
    **WOONGJIN HOLDING **
    A leak of hydrochloric acid occurred at a Woongjin's
Polysilicon plant in Sangju, North Gyeongsang Province on
Saturday, according to a report by Yonhap News. The police are 
investigating how the leak happened, the report said.
     
    **HYUNDAI MOTOR, KIA MOTORS **
    German designer Peter Schreyer, known as the creative brain
behind the Audi TT, will oversee both Kia and Hyundai's designs,
the Hyundai automotive group said on Sunday, as the carmaker
seeks to outdo German rivals Volkswagen and BMW. 
     

 (Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Additional reporting by Daum Kim;
Editing by Stephen Coates)
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