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Seoul stocks down late Tues. morning amid virus concerns

All News 11:40 August 31, 2021

SEOUL, Aug. 31 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks traded lower late Tuesday morning as investors assessed new regulatory risks from China, as well as South Korea's protracted fight against the virus.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 8.26 points, or 0.26 percent, to trade at 3,135.93 points as of 11:21 a.m.

The key index fell as investor sentiment was weighed down by new Chinese game regulations that will tighten the time under-18s in China spend on online video games.

South Korea is also battling its worst wave of the pandemic, with health authorities mulling new restrictions to flatten the virus curve ahead of the Chuseok holiday next month. The country's daily virus cases have stayed above 1,000 for 56 consecutive days.

Most large caps in Seoul traded lower.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics fell 0.13 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix slipped 0.97 percent.

Video game giant Krafton skid 3.32 percent on China's new rules on online video games.

Top automaker Hyundai Motor retreated 0.95 percent, while leading chemical firm LG Chem shed 1.56 percent.

Internet portal operator Naver remained unchanged, and top mobile messenger Kakao also remains flat.

Drugmaker SK Bioscience jumped 5.84 percent, following its announcement a day earlier it began phase three clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

The local currency was trading at 1,165.7 won against the U.S. dollar, up 1.3 won from the previous session's close.

yunhwanchae@yna.co.kr
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