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Seoul stocks gain for 6th session on eased virus woes

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Wednesday. (Yonhap)
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) figures are displayed at a dealing room of a local bank in Seoul, Wednesday. (Yonhap)
South Korean stocks advanced for a sixth straight session Wednesday on the back of eased concerns about the omicron variant. The Korean won rose against the US dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi) added 10.08 points, or 0.34 percent, to close at 3,001.8 points. The key index retrieved the 3,000-point mark for the first time in about two weeks.

Trading volume was moderate at about 482 million shares worth some 11 trillion won ($9.4 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 496 to 340.

Institutions bought a net 802 billion won, while foreigners sold 85 billion won and retail investors offloaded 689 billion won.

The Kospi got off to a strong start, backed by comments by Anthony Fauci, top medical adviser to the US president, that the symptoms of the omicron variant are most likely lighter than those of other variants.

"The 3,000-point mark seems to have become the psychological resistance threshold," said Shinhan Investment Corp. researcher Choi Yoo-joon.

"Concerns about the US tapering had been already priced in stock prices," he added.

In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics closed unchanged from the previous session at 77,400 won, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix lost 1.23 percent to 120,000 won.

Internet portal operator Naver moved up 1.02 percent to 395,000 won, and electric car battery maker LG Chem surged 5.63 percent to 751,000 won.

Giant pharmaceutical firm Samsung Biologics jumped 4.22 percent to 914,000 won on a record daily surge of the new COVID-19 cases in South Korea.

The local currency closed at 1,175.9 won against the US dollar, up 3.6 percent from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)

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