SEOUL, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- South Korean shares made its first decline in three sessions on Tuesday as foreign investors sold local shares amid concerns over Spain's reluctance for international aid.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) declined 12.03 points, or 0.6 percent, to close at 1,991.41. Trading volume stood at 523.72 million shares worth 4.45 trillion won (3.98 billion U.S. dollars).
The KOSPI started lower and stayed in negative terrain throughout the session as foreigners kept their selling streak for two straight sessions after purchasing local stocks worth around 3. 2 trillion won in the past 11 trading days.
Concerns over Spain led foreigners to sell stocks. The debt- ridden country has held back from requesting a widely-expected international bailout due to election considerations, pushing up its government bond yields.
Madrid was facing an important regional election on Oct. 21. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, fearing for losing voters' support, refused to yield to outside pressure to seek an international aid.
Worries about the global economic growth also worsened market sentiment. The business climate index for Germany, based on a monthly survey of 7,000 executives, declined to 101.4 points in September from 102.3 in the previous month, according to the Munich-based Ifo economic institute.
New stimulus measures from central banks in Europe, Japan and the U.S. have not been enough to overcome pessimism about the global economic prospects. Investors started to focus on the weakening economic fundamentals.
Foreigners led the market decline. Offshore investors sold a net 86.1 billion won worth of local shares. Institutional and retail investor purchased shares worth 66.8 billion won and 31 billion won respectively, but program-linked transactions posted net selling worth 37.4 billion won.
Among large-cap shares, decliners outnumbered gainers. Market bellwether Samsung Electronics ended steady at 1,327,000 won, but memory chip giant SK Hynix retreated 2.5 percent to 22,900 won. Top automaker Hyundai Motor edged down 0.2 percent to 244,500 won, but its affiliate Kia Motors slipped 1.6 percent to 72,500 won.
Top steelmaker POSCO fell 0.5 percent to 375,000 won, and the world's largest shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries dipped 0.4 percent to 255,000 won. The nation's No.1 life insurer Samsung Life Insurance slid 0.4 percent to 96,000 won, and the No.3 banking group Shinhan Financial Group lost 0.4 percent to 37,750 won.
The local currency finished at 1,119.3 won against the greenback, up 1.2 won from Monday's close.
Bond prices ended higher. The yield on the liquid three-year treasury notes lost 0.01 percentage point to 2.80 percent, and the return on the benchmark five-year government bonds slid 0.01 percentage point to 2.88 percent.