SEOUL, March 26 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks opened higher Thursday, tracking overnight gains on Wall Street buoyed by U.S. stimulus hopes amid the new coronavirus pandemic.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) had risen 15.24 points, or 0.89 percent, to 1,720.00 as of 9:15 a.m.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted its first back-to-back gain since February by climbing 2.4 percent to end at 21,200.55 points on Wednesday (local time).
U.S. stocks rallied after the White House and congressional leaders said they had agreed to a massive stimulus bill to tackle the economic slowdown from the new coronavirus pandemic.
However, the market cooled down later after some Senators said they plan to put a hold on the stimulus bill over an unemployment insurance proposal.
In Seoul, large-cap stocks had a mixed start.
Market kingpin Samsung Electronics moved up 0.51 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix advanced 2.72 percent.
No. 1 carmaker Hyundai Motor jumped 3.20 percent, and its auto parts affiliate Hyundai Mobis climbed 1.47 percent.
However, leading pharmaceutical firm Samsung BioLogics shed 1.26 percent, while top steelmaker POSCO lost 0.62 percent.
The local currency was trading at 1,228.40 won against the U.S. dollar, up 1.5 won from the previous session's close.
(LEAD) BTS' Jin to enter front-line boot camp next month: sources
DP leader urges Yoon to fire minister over Itaewon tragedy by Monday
(2nd LD) Rival parties agree to conduct parliamentary probe into Itaewon tragedy
Truck drivers set to go on nationwide strike
(LEAD) (World Cup) Injured defender back in camp after skipping 2 sessions
Yoon warns of unprecedented response if N. Korea conducts nuclear test
BTS' Suga to host his own talk show 'Suchwita'
(World Cup) S. Korea lodges complaint with FIFA over interpretation errors
(News Focus) Five years after its full nuke armament claim, N. Korea's threat becomes real, further complicated
(World Cup) S. Korea head coach to miss final group match vs. native Portugal