Seoul shares sharply down in late Fri. morning trade

SEOUL-- South Korean stocks traded 1.46 percent down late Friday morning, driven by steep falls in large-cap tech and bio companies.

The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) sank 39.19 points to 2,638.38 as of 11:20 a.m.

Top-cap Samsung Electronics fell 1.77 percent, with chip giant SK hynix dipping 2.3 percent. Pharmaceutical giant Celltrion shed 0.9 percent.

In contrast, chemical producer LG Chem rose 0.6 percent. Kia, the smaller affiliate of Hyundai Motor, also gained 0.5 percent.

The local currency was changing hands at 1,274.40 won against the greenback as of 11:20 a.m., down 8.1 won from Wednesday's close.

South Korean stock markets were closed Thursday for Children's Day.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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