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Seoul stocks trade nearly flat Monday morning amid COVID-19 concerns

All News 11:33 December 14, 2020

SEOUL, Dec. 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks traded nearly flat late Monday morning, as investors remain wary of the country's spiking new coronavirus outbreaks.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 1.35 points, or 0.05 percent, to 2,771.41 as of 11:20 a.m.

Giant chipmakers and drugmakers advanced as South Korea's daily new COVID-19 cases broke the 1,000 mark for the first time Sunday.

President Moon Jae-in said Sunday that the government is mulling raising the social distancing scheme to the highest Level 3.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics added 0.68 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix advanced 1.3 percent.

Pharmaceutical giant Samsung Biologics lost 1.1 percent, but Celltrion jumped 1.39 percent.

Internet portal giant Naver retreated 0.69 percent, while its rival Kakao climbed 0.4 percent.

Hyundai Motor, the country's largest carmaker, shed 0.26 percent, while its affiliate Hyundai Mobis spiked 7 percent, following reports about the auto part maker's acquisition of Hyundai Autron's semiconductor operation.

Leading chemical firm LG Chem declined 1.49 percent, and rechargeable battery maker Samsung SDI lost 1.62 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,090.05 won against the U.S. dollar, up 0.25 won from the previous session's close.

jwc@yna.co.kr
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