Korean Economy News
Korean contents stocks top picks among foreign investors amid renewed K-pop fever

Chung Seul-gi and Cho Jeehyun

Content providers stand out among Korean stocks that lost luster with foreign investors in recent months due to uncertainties over their performance.

Contents stocks were top favorites on the secondary Kosdaq market among foreign investors who bought more than selling from last month, net purchasing 11.2 billion won in November and 28.7 billion won ($25.5 million) in the first seven trading session in December. In October, they dumped 613.7 billion won worth Kosdaq shares.

The second top pick among foreign investors was drama production company Studio Dragon Corp., drawing non-Korean net purchase of 25.8 billion won from Dec. 1 to 7.

Video streaming platform Afreeca TV Co. ranked sixth with foreign investors net buying 15.6 billion won worth stocks, followed by top entertainment name SM Entertainment Co. at seventh with 10.8 billion won. JYP Entertainment Corp. also made the top 10 with 8.1 billion won.

Foreign attraction to contents stocks started last month when they cherry-picked on Korean equities that could be relatively untouched by economic downturn.

Afreeca TV was the second best seller as offshore investors net bought 35.0 billion won worth shares last month. Third on the list was SM Entertainment with 33.0 billion won and online game publisher PearlAbyss Corp. the fourth with 30.2 billion won. JYP Entertainment came at the 10th with foreign investors net purchasing 17.5 billion won.

Outlook on Korean contents power has turned brighter on renewed Korean entertainment fever.

According to Seoul-based market data provider FnGuide, Studio Dragon’s operating profit is expected to jump 73.9 percent from this year to 98.4 billion won and sales 32.8 percent to 509.8 billion won.

K-pop wave also gained momentum after BTS’s big splash across the globe.

FnGuide forecast SM Entertainment’s operating profit for next year to grow 25.6 percent to 65.2 billion won and sales 18.9 percent to 709.0 billion won. It projected next year’s operating profit for JYP Entertainment at 46.7 billion won, up 57.9 percent on year and sales at 159.3 billion won, up 26.1 percent. YG Entertainment is anticipated to see its operating profit more than double to 25.5 billion won next year and sales rise 14.6 percent on year to 325.0 billion won.

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