Seoul shares open higher following Wall Street rally

South Korean stocks got off to a strong start Friday, tracking overnight gains on Wall Street. The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index climbed 26.37 points, or 1.04 percent, to 2,568.83 in the first 15 minutes of trading. Overnight, U.S. stocks gained ground as investors looked forward to earnings reports from Apple, Amazon and Meta Platforms. The S and P 500 gained 1.2 percent, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq composite both rose 1 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively. In Seoul, chip and auto shares led the overall gains, with Samsung Electronics adding 0.95 percent and Hyundai Motor soaring 4.57 percent. Financial stocks and internet portal operators also got a strong boost. KB Financial rose 1.96 percent, and Naver added 5.68 percent after stellar fourth-quarter earnings. Battery makers and energy shares also advanced, with LG Energy Solution rising 0.52 percent and SK Innovation jumping 0.41 percent. The local currency was trading at 1,326.10 won against the U.S. dolla r, up 5.7 won from the previous session's close. Source: Yonhap News Agency