December 5, 2012 / 11:36 PM / in 5 years

Seoul shares seen higher on hopes for U.S. fiscal talks

SEOUL, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Seoul shares may extend gains on
Thursday, tracking rises on Wall Street after President Barack
Obama said a deal to avert the looming "fiscal cliff" could be
possible within a week. 
    "The Obama remarks will have a positive impact on today's
stock market," said Kwak Byeong-yeol, an analyst at Eugene
Investment & Securities.
    He expected U.S. lawmakers to strike a deal around Christmas
to avert the combination of U.S. government spending cuts and
tax rises due to take effect in early 2013 that could tip the
world's biggest economy back into the recession.
    The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) 
finished up 0.6 percent at 1,947.04 points on Wednesday, its
highest closing level in nearly seven weeks, with market
heavyweight Samsung Electronics touching a life-time
---------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT @22:27 GMT--------------- 
                 INSTRUMENT    LAST    PCT CHG     NET CHG    
S&P 500               1,409.28     0.16%       2.230    
USD/JPY                  82.42    -0.05%      -0.040    
10-YR US TSY YLD    1.591      --        -0.014    
SPOT GOLD            $1,693.70     0.02%       0.290    
US CRUDE                $87.88    -0.70%      -0.620    
DOW JONES             13034.49     0.64%       82.71    
ASIA ADRS              122.99     0.64%        0.78    
ow, S& higher, but Apple sinks Nasdaq in wild day 
>US debt prices firm on fiscal cliff concerns       
>Euro falls against dollar after Spain bond auction 
>Oil falls after US gasoline inventories leap higher 

    The European Commission imposed the biggest antitrust
penalty in its history on Wednesday, fining six firms including
South Korea's LG Electronics and Samsung SDI a total of 1.47
billion euros ($1.92 billion) for running two cartels for nearly
a decade. 
    KB Financial Group's board postponed a decision on the
purchase of ING Groep NV's South Korean insurance unit
to December 18, KB said in a statement on Wednesday.
    **KOREAN AIR **
    The Czech government will decide on the privatisation of
Czech Airlines (CSA) as early as April next year after weighing
possible bids from Korean Air and Qatar Airways. 

 (Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Richard Pullin)
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