Seoul Shares Experience Uplift on Technology Sector Gains

SEOUL — The stock market in Seoul witnessed an uptick late Tuesday morning, buoyed by significant gains in the technology sector amidst anticipations that robust economic data from the United States could influence the Federal Reserve's interest rate policy.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the market rose by 5.86 points, reaching 2,753.72 by 11:20 a.m., reflecting a 0.21 percent increase.

The optimism in the market follows the release of the Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing purchasing managers' index, which remained at 50.3 last month, marking the highest point since September 2022 despite the Federal Reserve's extended period of monetary tightening. With inflation still on the higher side and the economy showing strength, the Federal Reserve might reconsider its anticipated rate cuts, initially expected to start in June. The market saw a net purchase of stocks by foreign investors amounting to 421 billion won (US$311 million), which more than offset the combined sales by institutional and individual investors totaling 410 billion won. Technology stocks, led by Samsung Electronics Co. with a 3.3 percent increase, SK hynix Inc., and SK Innovation Co., were among the primary contributors to the market's gains. However, declines were noted in Hyundai Motor Co., Korean Air Co., POSCO Holdings, and Korea Electric Power Corp.

The report also noted a slight depreciation in the local currency, with the won trading at 1,353.60 against the U.S. dollar, a decrease of 4.2 won from the close of the previous session.

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