Seoul shares slip, foreigners' buying streak nears breaking point
(Updates to midday)
* KOSPI weaker alongside regional markets
* Foreigners offload local shares, buying streak may end
* 3Q earnings weigh despite Samsung Elec's record earnings
SEOUL, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Seoul shares fell early on Friday as foreign investors turned sellers after a record long run of buying, with concerns over tightening liquidity in China, South Korea's biggest export market, weighing on sentiment.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) dipped 0.8 percent to 2,030.87 points by 0215 GMT after opening a 2,047.46.
Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, the largest component of KOSPI, said its quarterly operating profit surged 26 percent to a new record. Despite the record earnings, Samsung Electronics slipped 0.6 percent in the morning on profit-taking, while rival LG Electronics Inc dropped 3.6 percent on disappointing corporate earnings.
"A combination of foreign outflows and shadows of China liquidity concerns are dragging the market," said Lee Kyung-soo, an analyst at Shinyoung Securities.
The South Korean authorities' intervention to rein-in the won currency, which hit a 2-year intraday high on Thursday, probably persuaded some foreign investors to lock-in profits in the share market, dealers said.
After notching a record 40 consecutive sessions as net buyers on Thursday, foreign investors appeared set to snap the trend as they offloaded 42.5 billion won ($40.05 million) worth of shares on Friday morning.
Concerns over tighter liquidity in China offset some otherwise supportive domestic factors, as Bank of Korea estimated economic growth held steady at a 2-year high. [
LG International Corp declined 6.1 percent, while POSCO and Daewoo International Corp fell 1.2 percent and 1.9 percent, respectively, on weaker earnings.
Meanwhile, Hyundai Motor Co advanced 2 percent and its autoparts-maker affiliate Hyundai Mobis Co Ltd gained 3.2 percent.
Declining shares outnumbered gainers 444 to 309.
The KOSPI 200 benchmark of core stocks dropped 0.9 percent, while the junior KOSDAQ edged up 0.5 percent. ($1 = 1061.0500 Korean won) (Reporting by Jungmin Jang; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)
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