(Corrects day when won hit over 5-year highs against dollar and yen to Thursday, not Monday)
SEOUL Jan 3 South Korea is closely watching the won's exchange rate movements and the ongoing depreciation of the yen, Finance Minister Hyun Oh-seok said, adding to a series of comments about the Japanese currency's movements.
"We are closely monitoring market volatility," Hyun told reporters late Thursday when asked about the latest developments in the yen's depreciation. His remarks were embargoed for publication until Friday morning.
The won touched its strongest level in more than five years against the dollar and the yen on Thursday, which sent stocks of major exporters such as Samsung Electronics Co and Hyundai Motor Co tumbling on concerns that local exporters' earnings would suffer.
The local currency was quoted at 1,052.1 against the dollar as of 0012 GMT, compared with Thursday's domestic closing level of 1,050.3. Dealers suspected that local authorities bought dollars on Thursday in a bid to slow the pace of the won's appreciation.
(Reporting by Se Young Lee; Editing by Eric Meijer)