KOSPI reaches record of 2,500 points

Jessica Lee, Oct. 24, 2017, 11:51 a.m.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index broke the 2,500-point level in intra-day trading on Monday. The KOSPI got off to a strong start, reaching the new record just two minutes and 40 seconds after the opening bell. The feat came 37 years and nine months after the index was launched at 100 points in January 1980.

But it retreated on profit taking by institutional investors to end at 2,490.05 points, up 0.02 percent from the previous trading day, the highest close ever. An electronic board shows the Korea Composite Stock Price Index rising to above 2,500 points in intra-day trading at KEB Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Monday. /Yonhap

Investor sentiment was buoyed after all three New York indices ended at record highs last week. Foreigners snapped up W315.1 billion worth of Korean shares and individual investors W208.4 billion (US$1=W1,131). Institutional investors sold W617.7 billion worth.

The KOSPI broke the 1,000-point barrier on March 31, 1989, and the 1,500-point level on April 9, 2007. It took just three more months for the KOSPI to surpass 2,000 points in July 2007 but another decade before it rose to 2,500.

Kim Sung-tae at the Korea Exchange said, "1989 and 2007 were periods of rapid economic growth or recovery, so stock prices were on an uptrend, but the other periods were marked by the 1997 Asian financial crisis and 2008 global financial crisis."

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