Stock assets of S. Korea's chaebol heads decrease more than 7 pct

SEOUL, July 5 (Yonhap) -- Stock assets held by heads of South Korea's top 30 conglomerates shrank by more than 7 percent in the first six months of this year, data showed Friday.

Their holdings of shares in 86 affiliates were valued at 30.1 trillion won (US$26.3 billion) as of June 28, down 7.9 percent from 32.6 trillion won tallied on Jan. 2, according to data compiled by the Korea CXO Institute, a private institute that tracks conglomerates, known here as chaebol, and other local companies.

Lee Kun-hee, the chairman of Samsung Electronics Co. and South Korea's richest man, saw the value of his stockholdings in Samsung units dip 5.6 percent to 11.3 trillion won during the cited period.

On Friday, Samsung Electronics., the world's top maker of smartphones, memory chips and flat-panel TVs, estimated it had posted a record quarterly operating profit of 9.5 trillion won (US$8.36 billion) in the second quarter of this year.

The preliminary estimate represents a 47 percent increase from a revised operating profit of 6.46 trillion won a year earlier, Samsung said in a regulatory filing.

Chung Mong-koo, the chairman of top automaker Hyundai Motor Group, suffered a 7 percent drop in the value of his shareholdings to 6.2 trillion won, according to the Korea CXO Institute.

Stock assets of Huh Chang-soo, the head of GS Group, fell 42.2 percent to 294 billion won due mainly to the earnings shock of GS Engineering