Taipei, May 8 (CNA) Companies listed on the Taiwan's stock market saw their pre-tax profits in the first quarter slump year-on-year by 48.85 percent due to several factors, including the European debt crisis and rising fuel costs, according to government tallies released Tuesday.
The companies listed in local main board stock exchange and over-the-counter market posted combined pre-tax profits of NT$178.2 billion (US$6.077 billion), down from NT$348.4 billion in the same period of last year, the Financial Supervisory Commission said in a press release.
The commission attributed the decrease to falling prices of plastics, solar power and DRAM products, an increase in fuel costs and the debt crisis in the eurozone, said Wu Quei-mao, secretary-general of the commission's Securities and Futures Bureau.
In addition, most of the companies had already reported their recognized losses from the European debt crisis in the fourth quarter of 2011, so that profits in the first quarter of 2012 showed an increase of NT$68.4 billion, or 62.3 percent, over the preceding quarter, Wu added.
(By Wu Ching-chun and Kendra Lin)