Send to

Seoul shares open higher ahead of US inflation data

Sept. 13, 2023 - 09:35 By Yonhap
An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Tuesday (Yonhap)

South Korean stocks opened slightly higher Wednesday, as investors await US inflation data for August that will offer clues as to what direction the Federal Reserve will take in its interest rate hike cycle.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 4.94 points, or 0.19 percent, to 2,541.52 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

The United States is set to release the consumer price index for August later in the day, with the reading on producer prices to be released Thursday.

The upcoming data is expected to provide clues about the Fed's tightening policy before the monetary policy meeting slated for Sept. 19-20.

All three US stock indexes closed lower Tuesday, with the Nasdaq tumbling more than 1 percent amid a slide for technology stocks, including Apple Inc. and Oracle.

In Seoul, chipmakers got a boost, with industry leader Samsung Electronics jumping 1.13 percent and SK hynix shooting up 3.08 percent.

Automakers also gained ground, with Hyundai Motor and its smaller affiliate Kia advancing 1.61 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively.

Home appliance maker LG Electronics went up 3.13 percent.

In contrast, battery shares lost ground.

Leading battery maker LG Energy Solution went down 1.4 percent, and battery material supplier Posco Future M dropped more than 2.5 percent.

Steel giant Posco Holdings also fell 1.47 percent, and top chemical producer LG Chem slid 2.5 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,325.90 won against the dollar at 9:15 a.m., up 1.9 won from Tuesday's close. (Yonhap)