South Korean shares fell on Monday after foreign investors sold domestic stocks by the most in four months, indicating that foreigners turned into net sellers following the record-breaking buying trend.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) slid 14. 25 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 2,025.17. Trading volume stood at 232.97 million shares worth 3.48 trillion won (3.27 billion U.S. dollars).
Foreigners led the recent KOSPI gain by purchasing stocks for the 44th consecutive session through Oct. 30, the longest winning streak in the country's history.
Overseas investors, however, sold a net 182.1 billion won worth of stocks, the largest sales in around four months, boosting worries that foreign capital may flow out of the local stock market.
Most large-cap shares ended in negative territory. Top automaker Hyundai Motor decreased 2.4 percent, and its affiliate Kia Motors retreated 1.5 percent. Leading chemical firm LG Chem lost 1.7 percent, and the nation's No.1 crude oil refiner SK Innovation slid 1 percent.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics inched down 0.1 percent, and SK Hynix, SK Telecom and Hyundai Mobis closed in negative terrain.
Domestic pension funds bought stocks worth 149 billion won, seeking to limit the KOSPI's further gain, but other institutional investors were net sellers. Retail investors bought stocks 148.2 billion won to hunt for bargains.
Consumer electronics giant LG Electronics gained 1 percent, and the world's largest shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries climbed 2.6 percent. The nation's biggest steelmaker POSCO ended unchanged at 317,000 won.
The South Korean currency finished at 1,062.9 won against the greenback, down 2.2 won from Friday's close.
Bond prices ended lower. The yield on the liquid three-year treasury notes rose 0.02 percentage point to 2.86 percent, and the return on the benchmark 10-year government bonds gained 0.02 percentage point to 3.47 percent.