Stock market turnover hits 5-year low in July

SEOUL, July 31 (Yonhap) -- Share turnover on the Seoul bourses hit a nearly five-year low in July as investors sat on the sidelines amid the unfavorable market conditions, data showed Wednesday.

The average daily turnover on the local stock markets came to 5.2 trillion won (US$4.7 billion) through Tuesday this month, the lowest since the 4.8 trillion won tallied in August 2008, the Korea Exchange (KRX) data showed.

The main bourse accounted for 3.62 trillion won, compared with 3.83 trillion won tallied in August 2008, when the collapse of U.S. investment giant Lehman Brothers dealt a harsh blow to the local financial market.

The tech-heavy KOSDAQ market, on the other hand, saw its daily turnover increase 56.4 percent over the cited period to reach 1.6 trillion won.

On July 1, the daily trading volume on the two markets came to 4.3 trillion won, also marking the lowest on a daily basis since the 3.4 trillion won posted on Dec. 29, 2008.

Market watchers said the stagnant turnover on the local stock markets came as investors took a wait-and-see approach amid the rising woes that the U.S. may reduce its quantitative easing moves down the road.

The slowing economy of China, the largest trading partner of South Korea, also made an adverse impact on investor sentiment, they added.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) closed at 1,917.05 points Tuesday, up 3.3 percent from 1,855.73 tallied in the first trading session of this month.

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