SEOUL, Jan. 8 (Yonhap) -- Seoul shares opened higher Tuesday as investors are hopeful that the trade talks between the United States and China may lead to some positive results.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index gained 3.06 points, or 0.15 percent, to reach 2,040.12 in the first 15 minutes of trading.
Individuals bought a net 25.54 billion won (US$23 million) worth of stocks, offsetting net selling of 20.76 billion won worth of stocks by institutions and foreigners.
Investors are keen to see how the first face-to-face trade negotiations of the year between Washington and Beijing will proceed this month. The two countries reached a cease-fire agreement on Dec. 1 and agreed to hold negotiations for 90 days, which began this week.
Large-cap stocks were mixed across the board.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co. fell 0.39 percent, leading steelmaker POSCO declined 0.61 percent, and No. 1 wireless services provider SK Telecom Co. was down 0.36 percent.
But top carmaker Hyundai Motor Co. rose 1.24 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix Inc. gained 0.68 percent.
The local currency was trading at 1,118.70 won against the U.S. dollar, down 0.10 won from the previous session's close.
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