SEOUL, April 29 (Yonhap) — South Korean stocks opened higher Thursday, backed by the U.S. Federal Reserve’s reiteration to keep its asset-buying schemes and earnings surprises from major companies that increased investors’ appetite for risky assets.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index rose 14.32 points, or 0.45 percent, to 3,195.79 points in the first 15 minutes of trading.

The stock index came to a strong start as the U.S. Federal Reserve said Wednesday (local time) it would not roll back its asset-buying programs despite the current “transitory” phase of inflation.

Tech giant Samsung Electronics and other major firms reported forecast-beating first-quarter earnings despite the pandemic.

In Seoul, top cap Samsung Electronics rose 0.24 percent, and No. 2 chipmaker SK hynix gained 0.7 percent.

Giant internet portal operator Naver added 0.94 percent, while pharmaceutical giant Samsung Biologics climbed 1.26 percent.

Leading chemical firm LG Chem jumped 4.16 percent, while top automaker Hyundai Motor retreated 0.68 percent.

The local currency was trading at 1,117.35 won against the U.S. dollar, up 5.65 won from the previous session’s close.