Foreign investors continued to offload South Korean shares for a second consecutive month in June amid jitters over the eurozone debt crisis and other economic uncertainties, the financial regulator said Tuesday.
Overseas investors sold a net 918.6 billion won (US$863.8 million) of local equities in June, after selling a net 2.8 trillion won in the previous month, according to the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS).
"Uncertainties over Greece's debt restructuring and worries over an economic slowdown in advanced economies prompted foreigners to continue selling," the FSS said.
Foreign stock ownership reached 392.9 trillion won, or 30.5 percent of the total market cap, as of end-June, down from 30.8 percent a month earlier, it said.
U.S. investors were the biggest net sellers in June, offloading shares worth 504.1 billion won and marking their first net selling position since November 2009, according to the FSS.
In contrast, Dutch investors were the top net buyers, picking up shares worth 470.9 billion won.
Meanwhile, overseas investors snapped up a net 2.2 trillion won of Korea's listed bonds last month amid expectations of the local currency's rise, the regulator said.
Foreign ownership of local listed bonds reached a record 81.1 trillion won as of end-June, it added.
The growth was fueled by Chinese investors' increased bond purchases. As of end-June, Chinese investors' bond holdings reached 8.7 trillion won, or 10.7 percent of the total foreign bond ownership, surpassing the 10 percent mark for the first time.
Chinese investors' holdings of South Korean bonds stood at 0.2 percent of the total foreign ownership at the end of 2007 but surged to 8.9 percent late last year.
Among foreigners who invest in South Korean bonds, Chinese investors are the fourth-largest group in terms of asset value, according to the FSS.