S.Korea stocks edge down, pare losses on upbeat China surveys

Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:20pm EDT

* KOSPI inch down on backlash of window-dressing
    * Upbeat China mfg PMI survey help pare losses
    * Won moves sideways, wary of intervention

    SEOUL, July 1 (Reuters) - South Korean shares edged lower on
Tuesday morning, weighed down by a selloff by domestic
institutional investors and the country's weaker-than-expected
exports data, but upbeat China factory activity surveys helped
trim much of earlier losses.    
    The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was
down 0.3 percent at 1,997.01 points as of 0205 GMT, after
touching an intraday low of 1,987.89.
    "Institutional investors have been window-dressing in
late-June, and appear to be booking gains from their increased
holdings of large-caps at the start of the second half," said
Lee A-ram, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities.
    Domestic institutional investors sold a net 43 billion won
($42.52 million) worth of KOSPI shares near mid-session, after
bringing in 823 billion won worth during their 8-day buying
spree through Monday.
    Hana Daetoo Securities analyst Chang Hee-jong pointed the
country's exports data coming in below market consensus had
soured sentiment. He expected investors to tread cautiously
before Samsung Electronics' April-June quarter earnings guidance
was issued on Friday.
    Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co Ltd 
fell 0.8 percent while autoparts maker Hyundai Mobis Co Ltd
 dropped 2.8 percent.
    Government data out on Tuesday showed South Korea's exports
grew an annual 2.5 percent in June, below the median forecast of
a 5.5 percent gain tipped in a Reuters survey of analysts, with
exports to China slipping for a second straight
month. 
    However, both private and government surveys for China's
factory activity expanded in June in line with expectations,
adding to signs that South Korea's largest export market is
regaining strength.  
    Defensive names were in positive territory, with mobile
carrier SK Telecom Co Ltd and state-run utility
company Korea Electric Power Corp gaining 1.7
percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.
    In the foreign exchange market, the won was little
changed against the dollar on caution over intervention by the
local authorities after hitting a near six-year high in the
previous session.
    South Korean foreign exchange authorities were suspected of
curbing the pace of the won's appreciation through dollar
purchases on Monday, when the won hit 1,010.8 per dollar - which
its strongest level since July 31, 2008. 
    The local currency was quoted at 1,011.5 versus
the dollar as of 0205 GMT, compared with Monday's onshore close
at 1,011.8.    
                       0205 GMT    Prev close
 Dollar/won            1,011.5       1,011.8
 Yen/won            9.9695/606        9.9803
 *KTB futures           106.47        106.43
 KOSPI                1,997.01      2,002.21
 * Front-month futures on three-year treasury bonds
($1 = 1011.3000 South Korean Won)

 (Reporting by Jungmin Jang; Editing by Eric Meijer)