SEOUL, Dec. 20 (Yonhap) — South Korean brokerage houses predicted the local stock market would continue its uptick move in 2021, citing signs of a global economic recovery and growing investor appetite for higher returns, data showed Sunday.

Multiple securities companies set their upper-end target band for the benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) above 3,000 points, showing greater confidence from a month ago.

Between end-October and early November, brokerages had expected a band of 2,100-2,700 points, citing uncertainties from the new coronavirus pandemic.

The latest target range surpassed the key stock index’s all-time high of 2,772.18 points Friday.

Shinhan Investment Corp. raised its target KOSPI band to 3,150-3,200 points, up from 2,100-2,700 points in late October.

The record low market rates, coupled with aggressive fiscal policies, will also help pull up the KOSPI, the brokerage said.

Hanwha Investment & Securities Co. raised its target band to 2,100-3,000 points, up from its 2,100-2,700 points forecast in late October.

“We projected a 10 percent increase in the 128 trillion-won net profit consensus, and maximized the price-earnings ratio (PER) to a record high thirteenfold,” Hanwha Investment & Securities researcher Park Seung-young said.

Foundry, battery and electric vehicle-related shares are expected to lead the KOSPI’s gain in 2021, Park said.

Global investment banks also joined the rosy projections.

JP Morgan set its upper band for the KOSPI at 3,200 points, citing expectations for South Korean companies’ earnings improvement in 2021-2022 and optimism over the COVID-19 vaccine.

The IB giant said health care and battery large caps are likely to add weight next year, leading the KOSPI’s uptick run.