South Korean stocks turned lower Monday morning after a brief rise, as institutions dumped stocks on profit taking.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index fell 2.00 points, or 0.08 percent, to 2,487.54 as of 11:15 a.m.
Institutions offloaded 258 billion won ($228 million) worth of stocks, exceeding a combined 225 billion won by foreigners and individuals.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co. rose 0.74 percent and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix Inc. advanced 2.59 percent.
Among decliners, state-run utility Korea Electric Power Corp. fell 2.19 percent, top Internet portal operator Naver shed 0.75 percent, and leading auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis Co. declined 1.21 percent.
The local currency was trading at 1,132.55 won against the US dollar, down 1.55 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)