SEOUL, June 29 (Yonhap) -- South Korean shares traded lower late Monday morning despite trimming earlier losses sparked by renewed fears of the new coronavirus stemming from a spike in the number of new cases at home and abroad.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 18.82 points, or 0.88 percent, to 2,115.82 as of 11:20 a.m.
Investors turned risk-averse amid the resurgence in new COVID-19 cases.
As of Sunday, the global toll has surpassed what experts have called two milestones -- 500,000 confirmed deaths and 10 million confirmed infections.
New cases in the United States, one of South Korea's largest trade partners, grew 1.7 percent. Florida reported a 6.4 percent increase in infections, with Arizona exceeding its weekly average for a fourth day.
The KOSPI index, however, erased some of its earlier losses, following reports that South Korea's new virus cases fell back to below 50.
The country added 42 cases, including 30 local infections, raising the total caseload to 12,757, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).
The tally marked a drop from 62 new cases reported Sunday and 51 additional cases identified Saturday.
Most large caps traded lower.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics lost 0.94 percent, while No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix gained 0.24 percent.
Top pharmaceutical firm Samsung BioLogics retreated 1.48 percent, with leading chemical maker LG Chem falling 1.10 percent.
The local currency was trading at 1,199.15 won against the U.S. dollar, up 1.45 won from the previous session's close.
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