South Korean shares rose for five straight sessions on Monday as the U.S. Federal Reserve's decision to reduce its bond purchases was accepted as signs that the world's largest economy started to recover.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 13.54 points, or 0.68 percent, to close at 1,996.89. Trading volume stood at 218.57 million shares worth 3.18 trillion won (3 billion U.S. dollars).
The Fed decided last week to begin tapering its monthly bond purchases by 10 billion dollars to 75 billion dollars starting January following the recent upbeat economic data.
The decision was recognized as the Fed's confidence that the world's largest economy started to get back on its stable recovery track.
The U.S. economic growth rate came in well above market consensus. The U.S. real gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an annual rate of 4.1 percent in the third quarter, up from the previous estimate of 3.6 percent.
Institutional investors bought shares worth 225.1 billion won, keeping its buying streak for the 14th consecutive session. Retail investors reduced their holdings of stocks by 262.9 billion won to lock in recent profits, but foreign investors purchased a net 70.4 billion won worth of local shares.
Among large-cap shares, gainers outnumbered decliners. Top automaker Hyundai Motor rose 1.8 percent, and its affiliate Kia Motors gained 1.8 percent. The nation's biggest auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis added 1.2 percent, and memory chip giant SK Hynix jumped 4.8 percent.
The South Korean currency finished at 1,060.7 won against the greenback, up 0.5 won from Friday's close.
Bond prices ended mixed. The yield on the liquid three-year treasury notes closed unchanged at 2.87 percent, but the return on the benchmark 10-year government bonds fell 0.04 percentage point to 3.58 percent.