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S. Korean stocks extend gains late Wed. morning

All News 11:27 May 20, 2020

SEOUL, May 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks traded higher late Wednesday morning, building on earlier gains on institutional buying.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 6.88 points, or 0.35 percent, to 1,987.49 as of 11:20 a.m.

The index opened slightly higher, bucking overnight losses on Wall Street that were apparently caused by renewed fears over the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 390.51 points, or 1.59 percent, to close at 24,206.86 Tuesday (U.S. time).

The sharp decline came one day after global stock markets rallied on reports of positive results from an initial test of a candidate COVID-19 vaccine.

Investor sentiment soured, however, after experts suggested the test results provided by U.S. bio firm Moderna may have been insufficient to prove the effectiveness of the candidate vaccine.

In Seoul, large caps were mixed.

Market kingpin Samsung Electronics shed 0.6 percent, but No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix added 0.85 percent.

Top portal operator NAVER spiked 3.98 percent, while leading automaker Hyundai Motor plunged 1.82 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,227.30 won against the U.S. dollar, down 2.0 won from the previous session's close.


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