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Korean stocks up late morning trade

South Korean stocks traded higher late Thursday morning, but pared their earlier gains on profit-taking, as the US Federal Reserve, as expected, raised interest rates and hinted that future adjustments will be carried out in a gradual manner.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index  rose 11.78 points, or 0.55 percent, to 2,144.78 as of 11:20 a.m.

The US stocks rose sharply overnight after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates as expected without accelerating its timeline for further tightening.

The US central bank raised its target rate by 25 basis points to between 0.75 and 1.00 percent, and did not hint at accelerating the pace of monetary tightening.

Most large caps traded mixed, with market kingpin Samsung Electronics rising 1.4 percent.

SK hynix, a major chipmaker, fell 0.61 percent, while POSCO, the country's leading steelmaker, jumped 3.96 percent.

Hyundai Motor, the No. 1 automaker, shed 0.33 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,133.80 won against the US dollar, up 9.8 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)