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Seoul stocks open lower on US rate hike worries

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Monday. (Yonhap)
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Monday. (Yonhap)
South Korean stocks opened lower Monday as investors took to the sidelines in the wake of the US Federal Reserve minutes last week that signaled possibilities of aggressive tapering policy.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) fell 24.17 points, or 0.82 percent, to 2,930.72 points in the first 15 minutes of trading.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite lost 0.96 percent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.01 percent amid concerns that the Fed may push harsher-than-expected rate hikes.

In Seoul, market kingpin Samsung Electronics decreased 1.02 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix declined 1.18 percent.

Internet portal giant Naver retreated 0.59 percent, with its rival Kakao shedding 3.7 percent. Banking top cap Kakao Bank advanced 1.26 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,199.65 won to the US dollar, up 1.85 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)

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