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Seoul stocks up late Tuesday morning on hopes of virus vaccine

All News 11:25 May 19, 2020

SEOUL, May 19 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks continued to trade sharply higher late Tuesday morning on reports of positive results from a COVID-19 vaccine test.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) added 36.10 points, or 1.86 percent, to 1,973.21 as of 11:20 a.m.

The stock market rally follows overnight gains on Wall Street.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average spiked 911.35 points, or 3.85 percent, to close at 24,597.37.

Such an advance came after U.S. pharmaceutical firm Moderna announced what it called promising results from its very early stage testing of a candidate vaccine.

"The U.S. stock market closed sharply higher Monday after U.S. pharmaceutical company Moderna announced the test results of its coronavirus vaccine testing where (some) participants generated antibodies," said Eugene Investment strategist Huh Jae-hwan.

"All industrial sectors finished higher on the U.S. stock market as Fed Chairman Jerome Powell also hinted at additional policy steps," Huh added.

The U.S. Fed chief on Sunday said the Fed's support programs are essentially unlimited. On Monday, he said the Fed will use a "full range of tools" to support the economy.

In Seoul, most large caps traded bullish.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics surged 2.15 percent, while No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix added 1.48 percent.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor spiked 5.55 percent, and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors jumped 6.54 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,224.25 won against the U.S. dollar, sharply up 8.15 won from the previous session's close.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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