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Seoul shares open lower tracking Wall Street slump

May 24, 2024 - 09:31 By Yonhap
An electronic board showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index at a dealing room of the Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul on Friday. (Yonhap)

South Korean stocks opened sharply lower Friday, tracking overnight losses on Wall Street amid lowering hopes for the US Federal Reserve's early rate cuts.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index shed 34.27 points, or 1.26 percent, to 2,687.54 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

The S&P 500 fell 0.7 percent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 1.5 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite went down 0.4 percent as hotter-than-expected economic reports raised speculations the Fed could keep its rate high for longer.

A series of economic reports showed Thursday the US price pressure increased and the labor market was still strong.

In Seoul, most of the big-cap shares lost ground.

Tech behemoth Samsung Electronics plunged 2.81 percent.

Leading battery maker LG Energy Solution dropped 1.1 percent, and its smaller rivals Samsung SDI and Posco Future M lost 1.73 percent and 1.91 percent, respectively.

Top automaker Hyundai was flat, but its auto parts making affiliate, Hyundai Mobis, slid 2.2 percent.

Steel giant Posco Holdings fell 1.55 percent, and chemical producer LG Chem lost 1.78 percent.

IT and insurance shares were also weak.

SK hynix was one of the few gainers, jumping 0.75 percent on the back of US chip giant Nvidia's continued rally.

The local currency was trading at 1,371.40 won against the US dollar, down 9.0 won from the previous session's close. (Yonhap)