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Seoul shares open lower on recession woes

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

South Korean stocks opened lower Wednesday, tracking overnight losses on Wall Street, amid lingering concerns over the impact of aggressive monetary tightening in major economies on growth momentum.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) shed 11.98 points, or 0.54 percent, to 2,211.88 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

Overnight, the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.43 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite inched up 0.25 percent.

The market has been in disarray, with the KOSPI sinking more than 3 percent on Monday before inching up 0.13 percent the following session, as aggressive monetary tightening in the United States and other countries to curb inflation stoked fears of an economic recession.

In Seoul, top-cap shares traded mixed.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics inched down 0.18 percent, while chip giant SK hynix jumped 1.1 percent.

Battery maker LG Energy Solutions grew 0.9 percent, but major chemical firm LG Chem sank 2.46 percent.

Carmakers lost ground, with top automaker Hyundai Motor shedding 1.61 percent and its affiliate Kia sliding 1.05 percent.

The Korean won was trading at 1,426.75 won against the US dollar as of 9:15 a.m., down 5.25 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)

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