* Foreign demand likely to decide KOSPI's direction -
* Worries over China still linger in the market
SEOUL, March 7 South Korean shares edged up
early on Wednesday, with investors hunting for bargains after
stocks fell to one-month lows this week over growing tensions
between Seoul and Beijing on Seoul's planned deployment of a
U.S. missile defence system.
South Korea's government said it would consider filing a
complaint to the World Trade Organization against what they
described as China's trade retaliation after Seoul agreed to
deploy the anti-missile system.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) was up
0.5 percent at 2,091.22 points as of 0250 GMT.
The won stood at 1,154.5 against the dollar, up
0.3 percent compared with Monday's close of 1,158.0.
Kim Ye-eun, a stock analyst at LIG Investment & Securities
said that foreign investors would be key to whether the index
"Foreigners bought over 200 billion won worth of KOSPI
shares yesterday despite strong market jitters, helping other
investors gain appetite for local equities today," Kim said.
Offshore investors were set to be small net buyers near
mid-session, while domestic institutions purchased a net 90.7
billion won ($78.74 million) worth of KOSPI shares.
Chipmaker SK Hynix fell 1.4 percent while tech
firm LG Electronics gained nearly 5 percent on
expectations of strong first-quarter earnings.
Advancers outnumbered decliners 478 to 293.
March futures on three-year treasury bonds shed 0.07
point to 109.30.
0250 GMT Prev close
Dollar/won 1,154.5 1,158.0
Yen/won 10.1246/34 10.1330
*KTB futures 109.30 109.37
KOSPI 2,091.22 2,081.36
* Front-month futures on three-year treasury bonds
(Reporting by Dahee Kim; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)