South Korean stocks opened steeply lower Monday as the recent plunge on Wall Street spooked local investors.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) had dropped 29.1 points, or 1.32 percent, to 2,183.45 as of 9:17 a.m.
On Friday, the Nasdaq Composite tumbled 3.08 percent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.34 percent amid woes over higher inflation. The S&P 500 retreated 2.37 percent.
In Seoul, market bellwether Samsung Electronics shed 0.53 percent, and chip giant SK hynix lost 1.15 percent.
Top automaker Hyundai Motor declined 1.2 percent, and its affiliate Kia decreased 1.3 percent.
Major chemical firm LG Chem went down 2.97 percent, while battery maker LG Energy Solutions edged up 0.1 percent.
Kakao, the operator of the country's most popular mobile messenger app, KakaoTalk, dropped nearly 9 percent due to a service disruption over the weekend that stemmed from a fire at its data center.
The Korean won was exchanging hands at 1,440.5 won against the US dollar as of 9:17 a.m., down 12 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)