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Seoul stocks open higher on auto, chemical gains

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Thursday. (Yonhap)
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Thursday. (Yonhap)
South Korean stocks opened slightly higher on Thursday, led by advances by auto and chemical stocks.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 5.28 points, or 0.18 percent, to trade at 3,007.08 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

Overnight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite added 0.64 percent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 0.1 percent on easing concerns about the omicron variant of the new coronavirus.

In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics lost 0.28 percent, while No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix increased 0.83 percent.

Leading carmaker Hyundai Motor moved up 0.95 percent, with its smaller affiliate Kia advancing 1.32 percent.

Electric car battery maker LG Chem moved up 0.4 percent, but giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics retreated 0.66 percent on easing virus concerns.

The local currency was trading at 1,174.2 won against the US dollar, up 1.7 percent from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)
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