Seoul shares end at 3-month high on strong foreign net buying

Mon Mar 31, 2014 2:17am EDT

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SEOUL, March 31 (Reuters) - Seoul shares inched up to their highest closing level in three months on Monday, extending its winning streak to a fourth session as persistent foreign capital inflows offset profit taking by some investors.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) ended up 0.2 percent at 1,985.61 points, its highest close since Dec. 30. The main index ended the month up 0.3 percent and is down about 1.3 percent for the January-March quarter.

Foreign investors positioned as net buyers for a fourth straight day, picking up a net 318 billion won ($297.4 million)worth of KOSPI shares, preliminary data showed. If the amount holds firm, it will be the biggest amount since Oct. 23.

Meanwhile the market showed muted reaction to North Korea undergoing an artillery fire drill off the western coast of the peninsula, with one shell landing in South Korean waters.

($1 = 1069.3000 Korean Won) (Reporting by Jungmin Jang; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)