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Taiwan shares continue to rise led by tech stocks

2019/02/12 19:10:56

CNA file photo

Taipei, Feb. 12 (CNA) Shares in Taiwan ended above the 10,000 point mark Tuesday for the second consecutive day, with the bellwether electronics continuing to lead the broader market, dealers said.

As concerns eased over the trade tensions between the United States and China, investors also scrambled to pick up old economy and financial stocks, which helped boost the main board, dealers said.

The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (Taiex) closed up 93.49 points, or 0.93 percent, at 10,097.74, after moving between 10,032.08 and 10,100.23. Turnover totaled NT$122.97 billion (US$3.99 billion) during the session.

The market opened up 0.28 percent on follow-through buying from the previous session when the Taiex closed up 0.72 percent, as investors shrugged off a 0.21 percent drop on the Dow Jones Industrial Average overnight, dealers said.

Buying on the local main board accelerated on the back of a rising tech sector, led by select "Apple concept stocks," in particular Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., which lagged behind the broader market on Monday, dealers said.

The petrochemical and financial sectors also attracted bargain hunting after underperforming the broader market the previous day, dealers said.

"The local main board continued to play catch-up today as investors rushed to build up their portfolios after seeing the strong gains on the U.S. markets while the Taiex was closed (Jan. 31 to Feb. 10)," Concord Securities analyst Kerry Huang said.

During the market closure in Taiwan for the Lunar New Year holiday, the Dow gained 2.14 percent, while the S&P 500 rose 2.57 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 3.84 percent.

"Market sentiment in Taiwan had also improved as investors have been looking at a possible deal between Washington and Beijing to resolve their trade disputes," Huang said, referring to reports that U.S. President Donald Trump's advisors have informally discussed the possibility of a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) next month.

Huang said the 1.09 percent rise of the Taiex on Tuesday was driven mainly by the bellwether electronics sector.

Hon Hai, an iPhone assembler, rose 3.00 percent to close at NT$72.00 as bargain hunters focused on the stock.

Also in the high-tech sector, contract chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., the most heavily weighted stock on the local market, gained 0.88 percent to end at NT$230.00, and Largan Precision Co., a supplier of smartphone camera lenses to Apple Inc., rose 0.63 percent to close at NT$4,000.00.

In addition, Yageo Corp., a maker of passive electronics components, rose 7.32 percent to end at NT$352.00, and its competitor Walsin Technology Corp gained 5.56 percent to close at NT$180.50.

In the petrochemical sector, which rebounded from a downturn Monday due to falling crude oil prices, Formosa Plastics Corp. rose 1.50 percent to close at NT$101.50, and Formosa Petrochemical Corp. finished 2.35 percent higher at NT$109.00.

Elsewhere, Shanghai Commercial & Savings Bank soared 2.05 percent to close at NT$44.70, after it was added to the MSCI Global Standard Indexes.

Among other financial stocks, Cathay Financial Holding Co. rose 0.80 percent to close at NT$43.90, and Fubon Financial Holding Co. added 0.34 percent to end at NT$44.30.

"The main board is technically healthier after the gains so far this week," Huang said. "The Taiex is likely to soon challenge the 10,148 point mark, which was an intraday high on Dec. 3, 2018."

According to the TWSE, foreign institutional investors bought a net NT$9.23 billion worth of shares on the main board Tuesday.

(By Frances Huang)
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