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Seoul shares open higher on US gains, sound earnings

An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Tuesday. (Yonhap)
An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Tuesday. (Yonhap)

South Korean stocks opened higher Tuesday, led by a rise in auto and chemical companies, amid sound earnings reports and overnight gains on Wall Street.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) climbed 10.69 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,667.82 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

US stocks finished higher Monday on the back of an advance in tech stocks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.70 percent, and the Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 1.29 percent.

In Seoul, techs, autos and chemicals advanced.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor and its smaller affiliate, Kia, jumped more than 3 percent and 4 percent, respectively, after both reported forecast-beating earnings for the first quarter.

POSCO Chemical also soared 3 percent on the back of solid quarterly earnings.

Major South Korean companies are due to announce their first-quarter results this week, with top-cap Samsung Electronics set to release its figures Thursday.

In contrast, steelmakers and insurers lost ground, with Hyundai Steel shedding 0.4 percent and Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance falling 0.8 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,248.10 won against the US dollar as of 9:15 a.m., up 1.8 won from Monday's close. (Yonhap)

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