* KOSPI rises, foreigners net buyers * Korean won strengthens against U.S. dollar * South Korea benchmark bond yield rises SEOUL, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean financial markets: ** South Korean shares were little changed on Friday as worries about surging coronavirus infections at home offset optimism over more vaccine developments. The benchmark index, however, was set to post its third straight weekly gain. ** The Korean won strengthened, and the benchmark bond yield rose. ** By 0203 GMT, the benchmark KOSPI rose 1.84 points, or 0.07%, to 2,549.26. ** South Korea's prime minister on Friday warned of strict COVID-19 curbs returning if the current level of infections was not contained soon and pleaded with the public to avoid social gathering. ** AstraZeneca and Oxford University, however, helped boost sentiment after they said on Thursday their potential COVID-19 vaccine produced a strong immune response in older adults. ** Adding to the uncertainty was Thursday's call by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to end pandemic relief for struggling businesses. ** Chipmaker SK Hynix fell 1.12%, while Kia Motors declined 1.53%. Samsung Electronics rose 0.15%. ** Foreigners were net buyers of 40.7 billion won worth of shares on the main board. ** The won was quoted at 1,114.1 per dollar on the onshore settlement platform , 0.13% higher than its previous close at 1,115.6. ** In offshore trading, the won was quoted at 1,114.2 per dollar, down 0.1% from the previous day, while in non-deliverable forward trading its one-month contract was quoted at 1,113.7. ** MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.52%,. ** The KOSPI has risen 16.00% so far this year, and gained 6.7% in the previous 30 trading sessions. ** The trading volume during in the KOSPI index was 496.01 million shares. Of the total traded issues of 905, the number of advancing shares was 481. ** The won has gained 3.8% against the dollar so far this year. ** In money and debt markets, December futures on three-year treasury bonds rose 0.01 points to 111.67. ** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 0.5 basis points to 0.959%, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose by 1.1 basis points to 1.613%. (Reporting by Cynthia Kim; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.)
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