SEOUL, Jan. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korean investors' holdings of foreign securities touched a new all-time high in 2021 on an overseas investment boom, data showed Thursday.
Local investors had held overseas stocks and bonds worth US$100.59 billion as of end-2021, up 39.3 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from the Korea Securities Depository (KSD).
Of the total, South Koreans' ownership of overseas stocks came to $77.91 billion, 65.5 percent more than a year earlier.
The value of U.S. stocks held by South Korean investors was the largest at $67.78 billion, up 81.5 percent from the previous year and accounting for 87 percent of their total overseas stock holdings.
Hong Kong shares came next with $3.1 billion, followed by Japanese stocks with $2.73 billion and Chinese shares with $2.37 billion.
U.S. electric vehicle titan Tesla Motors Inc. was South Korean investors' top pick with their holdings reaching $15.46 billion, trailed by smartphone behemoth Apple Inc. with $5.03 billion, U.S. chipmaker Nvidia with $3.12 billion and tech giant Microsoft Corp. with $2.27 billion.
Meanwhile, South Korean investors' transactions of overseas stocks and bonds soared 51.7 percent on-year to a new record high of $490.71 billion in 2021, according to the data.
The value of overseas stock settled through the KSD came to $398.47 billion last year, up 100.9 percent from a year earlier.
U.S. stocks took up 92.9 percent of the total, with Tesla and Apple shares placing first and second with $34.1 billion and $10.94 billion, respectively.