Seoul shares opened higher Tuesday as investors expect the US Federal Reserve to start easing this year due to continued disinflation.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 33.23 points, or 1.27 percent, to 2,653.55 in the first 15 minutes of trading.
Investors await January's US inflation data due later in the day. The US consumer price index is expected to support the view that decelerating inflation will allow the US central bank to start cutting rates this year.
In Seoul, most large-cap stocks advanced.
Market bellwether Samsung Electronics Co. rose 1.2 percent, No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix Inc. jumped 3.9 percent, leading carmaker Hyundai Motor Co. gained 3.8 percent, and national flag carrier Korean Air Co. was up 1.1 percent.
Among decliners, leading steelmaker Posco Holdings fell 2.3 percent, leading battery maker LG Energy Solution Ltd. declined 0.1 percent, and large discount store chain E-Mart shed 1.9 percent.
The local currency was trading at 1,328.90 won against the US dollar, down 0.7 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)