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Seoul stocks nearly flat late Thurs. morning, trim earlier losses

All News 11:58 June 11, 2020

SEOUL, June 11 (Yonhap) -- South Korean shares stayed nearly flat late Thursday morning after slightly trimming earlier losses following overnight losses on Wall Street.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 1.12 points, or 0.05 percent, to 2,194.57 as of 11:20 a.m.

The index got off to a weak start, tracking losses on Wall Street partly prompted by Fed Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's warning that the COVID-19 pandemic may have long-term drawbacks for the U.S. economy.

The lack of new and stronger emergency asset-purchasing programs from the Fed, such as yield curve control, also disappointed investors, halting the KOSPI's nine-session rally.

Large gains by local pharmaceuticals, however, kept the index from falling further.

Pharmaceutical heavyweight Celltrion soared 10.43 percent, following reports that the company will begin testing the effects of biosimilar product Remsima as a COVID-19 treatment.

Samsung BioLogics, another leading maker of biosimilars, also surged 7.67 percent.

Most other large caps traded in negative terrain.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics lost 1.44 percent, with No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix falling 1.21 percent.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor slipped 1.35 percent, and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors slipped 0.55 percent. Giant steelmaker POSCO shed 1.26 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,189.80 won against the U.S. dollar, up 1.40 won from the previous session's close.

jwc@yna.co.kr
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