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Seoul shares open higher ahead of U.S. inflation data

All News 09:27 November 08, 2022

SEOUL, Nov. 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korean stocks got off to a strong start Tuesday, as investors await the release of U.S. inflation data due out later this week that could offer clues about the Federal Reserve's path forward in its interest rate hikes.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 10.79 points, or 0.45 percent, to 2,382.58 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

U.S. stocks ended higher Monday (local time), on the eve of the midterm elections, with the prospect of the Republicans likely to control at least one chamber of Congress helping to erase some market uncertainties for the time being.

U.S. consumer prices for October due out Thursday will provide clues as to whether the Fed's hawkish interest rate hikes have helped tame the decades-high inflation, and whether it will go with another 0.75 percentage-point hike or smaller in its next December policy meeting.

In Seoul, tech and auto blue chips opened higher. Market behemoth Samsung Electronics gained 1.5 percent, and Kia, the smaller affiliate of Hyundai Motor, added 0.3 percent. Biopharmaceutical giant Celltrion rose about 2.7 percent.

Battery makers and refiners fell. Top battery maker LG Energy Solution slid 1.7 percent, and smaller rival Samsung SDI dipped more than 2 percent. Oil refiner S-Oil was down about 1.2 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,393.50 won against the U.S. dollar as of 9:15 a.m., up 7.7 won from Monday's close.


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