February 17, 2020 / 2:32 AM / a month ago

S.Korea stocks flat as investors gauge fallout from coronavirus

    * KOSPI almost flat, foreigners net sellers
    * Korean won strengthens versus U.S. dollar
    * South Korea benchmark bond yield rises

    SEOUL, Feb 17 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean financial
South Korea stocks were trading flat on Monday as investors
steered clear of making big bets as they were trying to monitor
the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak. The Korean won
strengthened and the benchmark bond yield rose.
** The death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in mainland
China reached 1,770, as of the end of Sunday, up by 105 from the
previous day, the country's National Health Commission said on
** Japan's economy shrank at the fastest pace in almost six
years in the December quarter as last year's sales tax hike hit
consumer and business spending, highlighting a fragile outlook
made worse by growing coronavirus risks.             
** As of 0222 GMT, the Seoul stock market's main KOSPI        
was up 2.81 points, or 0.13%, at 2,246.40. 
** China's central bank cut the interest rate on its medium term
loans on Monday as policymakers try to reduce the economic shock
from a coronavirus outbreak that is severely disrupting business
** For stocks to rise further, investors need to confirm solid
economic data, said Huh Jae-hwan, an analyst with Eugene
Investment & Securities. 
** Shares of battery maker SK Innovation             dropped as
much as 6.9% in early trade, after an interim ruling by a U.S.
trade panel over its dispute with rival LG Chem            .
** Foreigners were net sellers of 52.7 billion won ($44.60
million) worth of shares on the main board. 
** The won was quoted at 1,182.7 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.03% higher than its previous
close at 1,183.0.
** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at 1,181.1 per
U.S. dollar, up 0.1% from the previous session, while in
non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract
              was quoted at 1,180.5 per dollar.
** MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
                was up 0.24%, after U.S. stocks were mixed on
Friday. Japanese stocks         dropped 0.58%.            
** The KOSPI advanced 2.36% so far this year, and gained 2.1% in
the previous 30 trading sessions.
** The trading volume during the session in the KOSPI index
        was 206.62 million shares. Of the total traded issues of
901, the number of advancing shares was 297.
** The won lost 2.2% against the dollar so far this year.
** In money and debt markets, March futures on three-year
treasury bonds         fell 0.03 points to 110.57, while the
3-month Certificate of Deposit rate was quoted at 1.42%. 
** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 2.2
basis points to 1.351%, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose
by 1.4 basis points to 1.666%.

    ($1 = 1,181.6800 won)    

 (Reporting by Hayoung Choi, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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