(Updates to midday)
* Samsung Electronics shares up on foreign demand
* Shipbuilders advance on bets for stronger earnings
SEOUL, Aug 23 (Reuters) - South Korean shares were up more than 1 percent on Friday morning, spurred by bullish U.S. and European manufacturing sector data, though concerns about potential September tapering by the U.S. Federal Reserve capped the extent of the gains.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 1.1 percent to 1,870.16 points as of 0210 GMT, bouncing higher from an intraday low of 1,854.67.
“The market is responding well to the upbeat U.S. and European data, while concerns about India and Indonesia have eased,” said Samsung Securities analyst Lim Soo-gyun.
Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, the largest company by market capitalisation, rose 2.7 percent on foreign investors’ bargain hunting, poised to snap a five-day losing streak and buttressing the main index.
Memory chip maker SK Hynix Inc rose 2.1 percent while panel maker LG Display Co Ltd rose 2.3 percent.
Auto parts maker Hyundai Mobis Co Ltd rose 2.5 percent, also on bargain hunting, but affiliate Hyundai Motor Co shares were volatile and traded nearly flat amid fears of a prolonged strike after the labour union workers called for another partial walkout.
Doosan Heavy Industries and Construction Co Ltd rose 1.1 percent on a local newspaper report on Thursday that the firm was preparing an acquisition of an Italian defence group Finmeccanica’s energy unit Ansaldo Energia.
Shipyards Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co Ltd and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine rose 3.0 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively, after data on Thursday confirmed economic stability in the euro zone and China.
Among decliners, Korea Electric Power Corp dropped 1.9 percent, the most among large-caps as the energy shortage problem continued in the country.
Gainers outnumbered decliners 592 to 171.
The KOSPI 200 benchmark of core stocks gained 1.2 percent, while the junior KOSDAQ rose 1.9 percent. (Reporting by Jungmin Jang; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)