Tuesday, April 15, 2008

S.Korea won at 2-wk low on stock deals, dividends

S.Korea won at 2-wk low on stock deals, dividends
Tue Apr 15, 2008 12:00am EDT

SEOUL, April 15 (Reuters) - The South Korean won touched its lowest in two weeks against the dollar on Tuesday on persisting foreign investor sales of local shares and pressured by dollar demand related to dividend payments to overseas shareholders. The local currency was quoted at 983.2/3.9 per dollar
as of 0336 GMT, compared with its previous closing bid of 979.3.

It fell as low as 983.6, the weakest since April 1. "The won is expected to fall further as the opening price seems to be a resistance level," said a local bank dealer. It started Tuesday's trading at 979.5. Foreign investors sold a net 180.7 billion won worth of shares in South Korea's main stock market after weak earnings
from a U.S. bank, with the benchmark KOSPI down 0.16 percent.

They have dumped a net 1.05 trillion won during the last three consecutive sessions. Some South Korean companies, such as S-Oil Corp,are scheduled to pay dividends this week with the refiner set to pay 286.4 billion won to foreign stake holders.

Currency market players are also monitoring South Korean foreign exchange authorities' stance after a finance ministry official said on Monday the government would maintain its current policy to boost domestic demand.

0336 GMT 0010 GMT prev close
Won 983.2/3.9 982.4/3.2 979.3
Yen/won 9.7001/079 9.7215/294 9.6836
KOSPI 1,743.95 1,743.98 1,746.71

(Reporting by Cheon Jong-woo and Lee Kyoung-ho; editing by
Keiron Henderson)

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