Investors become net sellers of securities in H1

SEOUL, Aug. 4 (Yonhap) -- Investors turned to net sellers of South Korean shares and bonds in the first half of 2013, data showed Sunday, raising woes over an exodus of capital in the local financial market.

According to the data compiled by the Bank of Korea, local and global investors offloaded a net US$14.1 billion worth of shares and bonds in the January-June period, compared to a net buying of $440 million tallied six months earlier.

South Korean investors offloaded a net $14.9 billion, with their net selling rising 74.6 percent from a year earlier.

Foreigners scooped up a net $800 million worth of local bonds and shares, down 95 percent over the cited period.

It marked the largest capital exodus since a net loss of $13.2 billion tallied in the first half of 2007, when the global economy was hit hard by the subprime mortgage crisis.

Market watchers said this year's decline came as South Koreans set sights on overseas markets amid the country's economic slump and low key interest rates.

The outlook that the United States may cut back its quantitative easing moves also weighed on investors' sentiment, they added.

The country's financial authority, meanwhile, said its financial market is anticipated to remain relatively healthy down the road, as foreigners turned to net buyers of local shares in July, signaling a potential recovery.

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