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Yonhap News Summary

All News 16:50 May 11, 2020

The following is the second summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Monday.

(2nd LD) Infection cases linked to Itaewon clubs rise to 86

SEOUL -- The number of new coronavirus infections connected to bars and clubs in Seoul's popular nightlife district of Itaewon climbed to 86 on Monday, health authorities said amid growing concerns over a high risk of community spread.

The number, put together as of noon, includes 63 club visitors and 23 family members and friends who came in contact with the clubbers, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said during a press briefing.

(3rd LD) S. Korea at critical juncture for virus containment amid rising Itaewon-linked infections

SEOUL -- South Korea's coronavirus containment capability is again put to the test after successfully controlling new infections for weeks, as the country braces for a sharp rise in new virus cases linked to clubs and bars in Seoul.

The country reported 35 more cases of the new coronavirus Monday, the biggest single day spike since April 9, bringing the nation's total infections to 10,909, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

Loss of smell, taste added to list of coronavirus symptoms

SEOUL -- South Korea's health authorities said Monday that the loss of smell and taste are among the key clinical symptoms associated with the novel coronavirus as the country tries to stem the spread of the infectious disease amid a spike in new cases linked to bars and clubs in Seoul.

In its latest revision to the country's COVID-19 response manual, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said the inability to smell and a diminished sense of taste can be indications that a person has been infected with COVID-19.

Subway passengers in Seoul required to wear masks during crowded hours

SEOUL -- Subway passengers in Seoul will be required to wear face masks during crowded hours starting this week as the city government seeks to curb community transmissions of the new coronavirus, the city government said Monday.

The Seoul metropolitan government unveiled a set of measures that will begin being implemented Wednesday to let citizens keep social distancing in their daily routines when they use public transportation.

Unemployment benefit payments reach new high for 3rd-straight month over coronavirus

SEOUL -- The amount of state funds paid out as unemployment benefits soared to nearly 1 trillion won (US$820 million) last month, data showed Monday, due largely to the negative economic impact of the new coronavirus outbreak.

According to the Ministry of Employment and Labor, the government paid 993.3 billion won in benefits to those struggling to find jobs in April, marking a 34.6-percent increase from 738.2 billion won paid in the same month last year.

(LEAD) New batch of S. Korean anti-piracy troops sets off for overseas missions

SEOUL -- A new batch of the South Korean Navy anti-piracy unit Cheonghae left for waters off Somalia Monday as part of a rotational deployment, the Navy said.

The 300-member contingent departed from the southern port city of Busan on the 4,400-ton Dae Jo Yeong to conduct missions in the Gulf of Aden and the Hormuz Strait for six months starting in June, according to the Navy.

Corporate bond sales up in April amid eased virus rout

SEOUL -- Corporate debt sales inched up last month from a month ago as a market rout caused by the new coronavirus eased to some degree amid strong demand from foreign investors, data showed Monday.

Total debt sales were valued at 80.4 trillion won (US$66 billion), up 1.8 trillion won from a month ago, according to data from the Korea Financial Investment Association (KOFIA).

(LEAD) Seoul stocks down over looming uptick in virus cases

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks closed lower Monday to pare earlier gains due to growing concerns over another cluster infection. The Korean won fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) slid 10.42 points, or 0.54 percent, to finish at 1,935.40. Trading volume was moderate at 581 million shares worth 7.6 trillion won (US$6.23 billion), with losers outpacing gainers 529 to 316.

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