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Seoul stocks up late Thur. morning amid eased monetary tightening woes

All News 11:28 November 24, 2022

SEOUL, Nov. 24 (Yonhap) -- Seoul stocks traded higher late Thursday morning after the Bank of Korea delivered a modest 25-basis point rate hike, as the economy shows signs of losing momentum.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) had inched up 13.73 points, or 0.57 percent, to 2,431.74 as of 11:20 a.m.

Thursday's rate increase marks the central bank's sixth straight interest hike and the ninth increase of a combined 2.75 percentage points since August last year, when it began rolling back more than a year of its accommodative monetary policy intended to shore up the pandemic-hit economy.

Thursday's move also followed October's second-ever "big-step" 0.5 percentage-point increase.

The market opened higher here, tracking overnight Wall Street gains boosted by a dovish stance by U.S. Federal Reserve officials shown in the minutes from their November meeting that they might soon slow down rate increases while avoiding hurting economic growth too much.

The S&P 500 rose 0.59 percent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up 0.28 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 0.99 percent.

In Seoul, most large-cap shares traded up.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics inched up 0.16 percent, SK hynix rose 1.17 percent, and portal operator Naver added 2.48 percent. Major chemical firm LG Chem advanced 2.28 percent.

Battery maker LG Energy Solution climbed 1.43 percent, and Samsung Biologics, the biotech arm of South Korea's Samsung Group, went up 1.13 percent.

The local currency was exchanging hands at 1,335.50 won against the dollar, up 16.30 won from the previous session's close, as of 11:20 a.m.


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