SINGAPORE--Several South Korea drug and medical device makers can expect to be the big winners from a Constitutional Court ruling striking down the nation's law making adultery a federal crime. The law was passed in 1953 to protect women.
The stocks of Hyundai Pharmaceutical and Unidus rose sharply after the decision was announced. Hyundai makes morning-after pills and pregnancy tests, condoms and other latex products. Hyundai's shares rose by 9.7% and shares in Unidus surged 15% following the decision.
The same court had upheld the law as recently as 2008, but this time declared it unconstitutional on grounds it infringes on rights of people to make their own decisions regarding sex and secrecy. The decision of the 9-judge court was 7-2.
A majority of the nation's highest court wrote that such laws were gradually becoming passé around the world and "no longer reflects our people's way of thinking." The two dissenting justices said the law was needed to protect sexual ethics as well as the marriage institution.
- read the take at Reuters