SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- South Korean shares plunged Friday from recent record highs as growing worries over the U.S. subprime mortgage market triggered a rush of profit-taking.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index, or Kospi, fell 4.1 percent to 1,883.22. It was the biggest drop since June 3, 2004, when it dropped 4.3 percent.
Only on Wednesday, the index closed above the 2,000-point level for the first time ever.
Analysts expect the subprime woes to linger at least until next week, hurting hurt local shares further.
"Investors worried about a possible decline in housing prices when the issue first broke out, but now the worries are growing concerns over a possible reduction in liquidity," said Samsung Securities' analyst Oh Hyun-Suk.
The Korean won also suffered Friday against the U.S. dollar, which rose to 921.7 from 918.2.