SEOUL, Feb. 22 (Yonhap) — Foreign investors have remained net sellers of South Korean stocks due to their massive selling of top-cap Samsung Electronics Co., data showed Monday.

As of Friday, offshore investors had sold a net 5.51 trillion won (US$4.99 billion) worth of local stocks during the 33 sessions this year, according to the data from industry sources.

Foreigners have been in net-selling mode for the past year, with their net selling amounting to 29.78 trillion won.

Their net-selling position this year resulted mainly from their massive sell-off of Samsung Electronics shares to lock in profits, with their net selling reaching as much as 7.53 trillion won.

Excluding Samsung Electronics, foreign investors have bought a net 2.02 trillion won worth of South Korea stocks.

Samsung Electronics was the most-sold issue among local shares by foreign investors, followed by No. 2 carmaker Kia Motors with about 1.20 trillion won and LG Electronics with 1.14 trillion won.

Leading chemical firm LG Chem was the most-bought stock with 1.02 trillion won, trailed by internet portal giant Kakao with 882 billion won and its bigger rival Naver with 677 billion won.’