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Seoul stocks open lower on fears of US-China dispute

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)

South Korean stocks opened slightly lower Friday, apparently tracking overnight losses on Wall Street related to a brewing dispute between the United States and China.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) lost 2.58 points, or 0.13 percent, to 1,995.73 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 101.78 points, or 0.41 percent, to close at 24,474.12 on Thursday (New York time).

Fears of a dispute between the world's two largest economies apparently spooked investor sentiment there after US President Donald Trump again blamed China for the COVID-19 pandemic, saying it was the "incompetence of China" that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands globally.

The US and China are South Korea's two main trading partners.

Large caps traded mixed.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics lost 1.10 percent while No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix slipped 1.08 percent.

Top pharmaceutical firm Samsung BioLogics spiked 2.96 percent, with leading chemical maker LG Chem advancing 1.06 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,235.45 won against the US dollar, down 4.55 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)
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