(RTTNews) – The South Korea stock market has moved higher in two straight sessions, advancing more than 55 points or 2 percent along the way. The KOSPI now rests just beneath the 2,700-point plateau although it’s likely to open under pressure on Monday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is broadly negative on disappointing earnings news, interest rate concerns and sinking crude oil prices. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were sharply lower and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.
The KOSPI finished sharply higher on Friday following gains from the chemical companies and technology stocks, while the financials and oil companies were soft.
For the day, the index climbed 27.56 points or 1.03 percent to finish at 2,695.05 after trading between 2,664.06 and 2,696.10. Volume was 962.3 million shares worth 12.4 trillion won. There were 566 gainers and 294 decliners.
Among the actives, Shinhan Financial sank 0.71 percent, while KB Financial stumbled 1.02 percent, Hana Financial retreated 1.26 percent, Samsung Electronics soared 4.01 percent, Samsung SDI jumped 2.17 percent, LG Electronics plummeted 3.32 percent, SK Hynix rallied 2.74 percent, Naver accelerated 2.14 percent, LG Chem spiked 3.39 percent, Lotte Chemical advanced 1.03 percent, S-Oil dropped 0.96 percent, SK Innovation plunged 4.87 percent, POSCO slipped 0.34 percent, SK Telecom added 0.53 percent, KEPCO climbed 1.09 percent, Hyundai Motor skidded 1.33 percent and Kia Motors rose 0.12 percent.
The lead from Wall Street is brutal as the major averages opened in negative territory and the losses only accelerated as the day progressed, finally ending deep in the red.
The Dow plummeted 939.19 points or 2.77 percent to finish at 32,977.1, while the NASDAQ plunged 536.86 points or 4.17 percent to close at 12,334.64 and the S&P 500 tumbled 155.57 points or 3.36 percent to end at 4,131.93.
The sell-off capped off the worst month for the NASDAQ since October 2008, with the tech-heavy index showing a 13.3 percent nosedive. The S&P 500 also plunged by 8.8 percent for April, marking its worst month since March 2020, while the Dow slumped by 4.9 percent.
A negative reaction to the latest earnings news contributed to the sharp pullback, especially on the NASDAQ thanks to disappointing results from tech giants such as Amazon (AMZN), Intel (INTC) and Apple (AAPL).
The sell-off may also have reflected traders moving money out of stocks ahead this week’s Federal Reserve meeting, with the central bank widely expected to raise interest rates by 50 basis points.
In economic news, the Commerce Department said U.S. personal income increased slightly more than expected in March, while personal spending jumped by much more than anticipated. Also, the Fed said core consumer price growth slowed marginally in March.
Crude oil futures pared early gains and drifted lower Friday, snapping a three-day winning streak as worries about outlook for energy demand weighed on prices. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for June ended lower by $0.67 or 0.6 percent at $104.69 a barrel. WTI crude futures gained 3.3 percent last week.