* Main index may break two-day losing run
* Foreigners turn net buyers
SEOUL, March 5 Seoul shares were up in early
trade Wednesday after two losing days as growing hopes that
tensions in Ukraine would not escalate into military conflict
boosted appetite for riskier assets.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was up
0.9 percent at 1,971.19 points as of 0205 GMT.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country reserved
the right to use all options to protect compatriots in Ukraine
but added that use of force would be a last resort, easing fears
about the risk of war.
China also offered additional relief to investors by
maintaining a 7.5 percent economic growth target for the current
year, though the leaders also announced ambitious reforms that
seek to push the country towards more balanced and sustained
"What the market's going through today appears to be a relief
rally following signs of stabilisation of Ukraine's crisis, and
the fact that China's growth target is in line with market
consensus is also having an effect," said Daewoo Securities
analyst Kim Hak-gyun.
"Broadly speaking, the stock market should be heading
upwards; foreign investors will have no reason to aggressively
sell local stocks if global risks continue to ease, so that
should also be positive in terms of supply and demand," he
Foreigners were net buyers of local stocks in early morning
trade, potentially ending two days of outflows.
Advancers outnumbered decliners 557 to 216.
Blue chips Samsung Electronics Co. and Kia
Motors Corp. were up 1.4 percent and 0.9 percent,
respectively, tracking improved appetite for local stocks in
Hyundai Steel Co. rose 3.2 percent while shares
of rival steelmaker Posco were up 2.4 percent, as
Beijing's 2014 growth target lent hope that China will avoid a
hard landing this year -- easing fears of a sharp decline in
steel demand there.
The KOSPI 200 benchmark of core stocks was up 1
percent, while the junior KOSDAQ edged 0.8 percent
(Reporting by Se Young Lee; Editing by Eric Meijer)