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Seoul shares open lower on first day of trading in 2017

All News 10:46 January 02, 2017

SEOUL, Jan. 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks started slightly lower Monday, the first trading session of the year, as foreigners dumped market heavyweights, such as LG Chem.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) lost 2.88 points, or 0.14 percent, to 2,023.58 in the first 30 minutes of trading.

On Friday, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 47.18 points, or 0.29 percent, and the S&P 500 shed 0.46 percent to 2,238.83.

Large caps on the Seoul bourse were mixed, with tech and chemical shares leading the losses.

Market kingpin Samsung Electronics edged up 0.06 percent, and while chipmaker SK hynix was up 2.24 percent, Naver, the operator of the country's top Internet portal, gained 0.9 percent.

Samsung SDI, a battery-making unit of Samsung Group, tumbled 5.5 percent and top chemical producer LG Chem lost 4.98 percent on the news that China will exclude vehicles with South Korean batteries from receiving subsidies.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor remained flat, while its smaller affiliate Kia Motors lost 0.51 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,207.30 won against the U.S. dollar, down 0.06 won from the previous session's close.

The South Korean equity market opened one hour later than usual Monday.


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