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S.Korea stocks climb as more economies reopen

    * KOSPI rises, foreigners net sellers
    * Korean won weakens against U.S. dollar
    * South Korea benchmark bond yield rises

    SEOUL, May 18 (Reuters) - Round-up of South Korean financial
markets:
** South Korean shares rose on Tuesday as optimism over the
reopening of more Western economies eclipsed concerns about
spiking cases of coronavirus in some Asian countries. The Korean
won weakened, while the benchmark bond yield rose.
    
** The benchmark KOSPI         climbed 34.33 points, or 1.10%,
to 3,168.85, as of 0129 GMT.
    
** Among the heavyweights, technology giant Samsung Electronics
            rose 0.13% and peer SK Hynix             gained
2.98%, while LG Chem             added 1.74% and Naver
            advanced 1.02%.
    
** The British economy reopened, giving 65 million people a
measure of freedom after a four-month COVID-19 lockdown. With
accelerating vaccination rates, France and Spain have relaxed
COVID-related restrictions, and on Saturday, Portugal and the
Netherlands eased travel restrictions.             
    
** Investors are looking forward to the minutes from the Federal
Reserve's meeting last month, which could affect the pace of
profit-taking by investors, said Seo Jung-hun, an analyst at
Samsung Securities.
    
** Foreigners were net sellers of 71.1 billion won worth of
shares on the main board.
    
** The won was quoted at 1,137.0 per dollar on the onshore
settlement platform           , 0.19% lower than its previous
close at 1,134.8.
    
** In offshore trading, the won        was quoted at 1,134.5 per
dollar, up 0.2% from the previous day, while in non-deliverable
forward trading its one-month contract               was quoted
at 1,134.3.
    
** The KOSPI has risen 10.28% so far this year, and gained 0.7%
in the previous 30 trading sessions.
    
** The won has lost 4.5% against the dollar so far this year.
    
** In money and debt markets, June futures on three-year
treasury bonds         fell 0.03 point to 110.98.
    
** The most liquid 3-year Korean treasury bond yield rose by 0.7
basis point to 1.114%, while the benchmark 10-year yield rose by
2.2 basis points to 2.139%.

 (Reporting by Cynthia Kim; Additional reporting by Jihoon Lee;
Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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