The South Korea stock market has finished lower in two of three trading days since the end of the five-day winning streak in which it had climbed almost 60 points or 2.6 percent. The KOSPI now rests just beneath the 2,470-point plateau and it may tick higher again on Wednesday.
The global forecast for the Asian is mixed and flat ahead of key central bank meetings in the next few days. The European markets were slightly lower and the U.S. bourses were mixed and flat - and the Asian bourses figure to split the difference.
The KOSPI finished barely lower on Tuesday as losses from the steel and financial companies were tempered by support from the automobile producers and telecoms - while the stocks were mixed.
For the day, the index eased 1.32 points or 0.05 percent to finish at 2,468.83 after trading between 2,462.84 and 2,479.56. Volume was 601.58 million shares worth 9.40 trillion won. There were 492 decliners and 323 gainers.
Among the actives, Shinhan Financial lost 0.63 percent, while KB Financial fell 0.87 percent, Hana Financial dipped 0.65 percent, Woori Bank collected 1.20 percent, POSCO dropped 1.61 percent, Hyundai Steel tumbled 2.72 percent, Samsung Electronics skidded 1 percent, LG Electronics jumped 1.12 percent, SK hynix shed 0.90 percent, Hyundai Motor added 0.72 percent, Kia Motors gained 0.77 percent and SK Telecom spiked 2.28 percent.
The lead from Wall street is cautiously optimistic as stocks showed a lack of direction on Tuesday, bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before ending mixed.
The Dow fell 1.58 points or 0.01 percent to 25,320.73, while the NASDAQ climbed 43.87 points or 0.57 percent to 7,703.79 and the S&P 500 rose 4.85 points or 0.17 percent to 2,786.85.
The soft performance came ahead of monetary policy announcements by the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank. The Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday, while the ECB may discuss ending its bond purchasing program on Thursday.
In economic news, the Labor Department reported a modest increase in consumer prices in May, while core CPI edged up to a 15-year high.
Traders largely shrugged off the meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un - who pledged to work together to "build a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula."
by P2PNews Staff Writer