Market cap of top 30 biz groups swells 13.8 pct this year

SEOUL, The market value of listed firms belonging to South Korea's top 30 business groups has risen nearly 14 percent this year amid their efforts to find new growth engines, with POSCO Group posting the highest growth rate, a report showed Wednesday.

The combined market capitalization of 216 listed firms of the leading conglomerates came to 1,446.7 trillion won (US$1.07 trillion) as of last Thursday, up 13.8 percent from Jan. 2, according to the report by the Leaders Index.

The solid increase comes as those companies have been striving to break into new growth industries, such as future mobility, semiconductors and rechargeable batteries, it said.

Steel to rechargeable battery conglomerate POSCO Group registered the biggest growth rate among the conglomerates, with the combined market value of its six listed affiliates soaring more than 120 percent over the cited period.

POSCO has been ramping up efforts to shift its business focus to eco-friendly materials, including secondary battery components like lithium, cathodes and anodes.

LS Group came next with the market cap of seven listed units soaring 43.5 percent, followed by Hanwha Group with 30.5 percent, SK Group with 30.4 percent and Hyundai Motor Group with 21.6 percent.

In contrast, conglomerates focusing on IT, distribution, transportation and construction -- Kakao, SM, DL, Shinsegae and CJ -- saw their market capitalization shrinking at a double-digit rate, with that of CJ dropping at the steepest rate of 27.1 percent.

Samsung, whose marquee unit is global tech titan Samsung Electronics, had the largest market capitalization, trailed by LG, SK and Hyundai Motor Group, with POSCO outstripping Kakao to rank fifth, according to the report.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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