South Korean stocks started lower Tuesday as investors were disheartened by the worst setbacks in eight years in Chinese stock markets the previous day, analysts said.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 5.96 points, or 0.29 percent, to 2,032.85 in the first 15 minutes of trading.
Carmakers started lower as investors locked in profits from Monday's rally. Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors both traded in negative territory.
Chemical shares, including LG Chem, lost ground, while cosmetics giant Amore Pacific and its smaller rival, LG Household & Health Care, remained bearish.
On Monday, the Shanghai Composite Index dived 8.5 percent, the largest drop in eight years amid worries over its slowing economic growth.
The local currency was trading at 1,168.2 won against the U.S. dollar as of 9:15 a.m., down 1.2 won from Monday's close.