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S. Korean shares down in late morning trading

All News 11:31 June 14, 2016

SEOUL, June 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korean shares traded lower late Tuesday morning as investors joined the global sell-off ahead of major economic and political events in the United States and Europe.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) shed 7.2 points, or 0.36 percent, to 1,971.86 as of 11:20 a.m.

The index started cautiously higher, but it soon lost steam as foreigners and institutions offloaded shares ahead of the Federal Reserve's meeting and the growing concerns over Britain's potential exit from the European Union.

Market kingpin Samsung Electronics inched up 0.15 percent, and SK hynix, the world's second-largest chipmaker, rose 3 percent.

Top steelmaker POSCO declined 2.37 percent, and LG Chem, the nation's leading battery maker, retreated 1.17 percent.

Shipping shares rallied after financial regulators said Monday that creditors may consider a possible merger between the nation's two largest shipping companies upon the completion of their separate restructuring programs, and its smaller rival Hyundai Merchant Marine soared 3.44 percent.

Hanjin Shipping, South Korea's No. 1 container shipping line, jumped 8.12 percent.

The local currency was changing hands at 1,172.5 won against the U.S. dollar, up 0.9 won from the previous session's close.

ejkim@yna.co.kr
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