* Weak retail data pares early gains
* Techs outperform; LG Display and LG Elec up 1.6 pct
* Builders Dohwa and Korea Eng shoot up 15 pct again
By Somang Yang
SEOUL, Feb 7 (Reuters) - South Korean shares were largely unchanged on Thursday after data showing a cloudy outlook for Asia’s fourth largest economy pared gains made by tech stocks.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) ticked 0.1 percent higher at 1,937.04 points as of 0238 GMT.
The index dipped into the negative following a senior finance official’s warnings that South Korea’s economy may fall further after record declines in sales at top department and discount stores last month. [ID:nL4N0B708Y
However, technology shares buttressed the main board, with LG Display and its affiliate, LG Electronics, both up by 1.6 percent.
“Although the first-quarter is a low season for techs, DRAM chip prices have rebounded nearly 20 percent since January, so this should give chipmakers a boost,” said Lee Se-chul at Meritz Securities.
There were 400 advancing shares against 401 decliners.
Among daily movers, builders Dohwa Engineering and Korea Engineering Consultants jumped near the 15 percent daily limit for the second day on hopes that they will win some orders on the Thai government’s 12 trillion won ($11 billion) water management infrastructure programme.
The KOSPI 200 benchmark of core stocks was up 0.1 percent, while the junior KOSDAQ edged 0.2 percent lower. (Editing by Sanjeev Miglani)