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S.Korea stocks rise after reports of Kia-Apple deal

    * KOSPI rises, foreigners net buyers
    * Korean won gains against U.S. dollar
    * South Korea benchmark bond yield rises

    SEOUL, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean financial
markets:
    
    ** South Korean shares rose for a third straight session on
Wednesday, as auto shares were boosted by reports of a possible
$3.6 billion deal between Kia Corp             and Apple Inc
        . Both the won and the benchmark bond yield rose. 
    
    ** The benchmark KOSPI         rose 16.31 points, or 0.53%,
to 3,113.12 by 0158 GMT, after gaining as much as 1.5% in early
trade. The index gained 1.3% in the previous session.
    
    ** Kia Corp, an affiliate of Hyundai Motor Group, surged as
much as 14.5% after local media reported the South Korean
automaker and Apple will likely sign a deal in mid-February for
the U.S. tech giant's car production.    
    
    ** Hyundai Motor Co             rose 2.5% as the country's
largest carmaker reported robust January global sales.
            
    
    ** "Reports over Apple-Kia deal boosted auto shares ... U.S.
stimulus negotiations are continuing, with expectations that it
will be agreed at around $1 trillion," said Seo Sang-young
analyst at Kiwoom Securities.  
    
    ** Democrats in the U.S. Congress on Tuesday took the first
steps toward advancing President Joe Biden's proposed $1.9
trillion coronavirus aid plan without Republican support.
            
    
    ** Major heavyweight stocks were mixed: LG Chem            
added 1.8%, while Chip giants Samsung Electronics            
and SK Hynix             slid 0.2% and 0.4%, respectively.
    
    ** Foreigners were net buyers of 98.3 billion won ($88.23
million) worth of shares on the main board. 
    
    ** The won was quoted at 1,113.0 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.42% higher than its previous
close.
    
    ** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at
1,113.5, up 0.2% from the previous day, while in non-deliverable
forward trading its one-month contract               was quoted
at 1,112.9.
    
    ** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by
0.1 basis points to 0.981%.

($1 = 1,114.1500 won)

 (Reporting by Joori Roh; Additional reporting by Jihoon Lee;
Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)
  
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