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Seoul stocks trade lower late Mon. morning on elevated virus fears

Stocks 11:46 June 15, 2020

SEOUL, June 15 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks continued to trade lower late Monday morning, despite trimming earlier losses prompted by growing concerns of a second wave in the new coronavirus pandemic.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 6.13 points, or 0.29 percent, to 2,126.17 as of 11:20 a.m.

The drop came amid concerns that the COVID-19 pandemic may resurge in the wake of the global economic reopening.

"The number of new cases is going down in New York, but is steeply rising in some 20 other states including Florida," Kiwoom Securities analyst Seo Sang-young said.

The United States is one of South Korea's largest trade partners, along with China.

The KOSPI trimmed some of its earlier losses on China's improved retail sales figures for consumer goods. A Chinese index on consumption confidence fell 2.8 percent from a year ago in May, recovering from a 7.5 percent on-year plunge in April.

Large caps traded mixed.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics lost 0.96 percent while No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix advanced 0.70 percent.

Top pharmaceutical firm Samsung BioLogics spiked 6.09 percent amid coronavirus concerns, whereas leading automaker Hyundai Motor retreated 2.42 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,207.80 won against the U.S. dollar, down 4.00 won from the previous session's close.


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