Seoul shares up 0.76 pct in late-morning trade

SEOUL, South Korean stocks traded 0.76 percent higher late Monday morning as foreigners scooped up large-cap shares. The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) had increased 20.09 points to 2,668.85 as of 11:20 a.m. Chipmakers were strong, with Samsung Electronics rising 0.96 percent and SK hynix jumping 3.2 percent. Top mobile carrier SK Telecom climbed 1.15 percent, and KT jumped 5.2 percent. Leading department store Shinsegae gained 0.98 percent, and Hyundai Department Store added 1.82 percent. But battery shares went south, with industry leader LG Energy Solution falling 2.68 percent and Samsung SDI dropping 1.85 percent. The local currency was trading at 1,333.05 won against the U.S. dollar, up 2.35 won from the previous session's close. Source: Yonhap News Agency