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Korean shares open higher on US gains

South Korean stocks opened higher Tuesday, tracking gains on Wall Street, amid eased market uncertainties. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index gained 5.12 points, or 0.24 percent, to 2,150.88 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

Analysts expected the main index to get a boost from the United States' decision not to designate South Korea as a currency manipulator in Tuesday's session. 

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.90 percent, and the tech-heavy NASDAQ also advanced 0.89 percent Monday (US time).

Tech and utility stocks led gains, with market behemoth Samsung Electronics rising 0.24 percent and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix climbing 1.02 percent. Utility firm Korea Electric Power Corp. advanced 1.22 percent.

Defensive stocks, which are less prone to external changes and provide constant earnings, shed gains from the previous session.

No. 1 cosmetics company AmorePacific fell 0.18 percent, and industry leader Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance declined 0.18 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,133.10 won against the US dollar, a gain of 4.60 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)