Taiwan shares sharply lower amid renewed U.S.-China tensions
Taipei, May 22 (CNA) Shares in Taiwan ended sharply lower Friday amid renewed tensions between the United States and China over Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies and China's plan to introduce a national security law in Hong Kong.
The Taiex, the key barometer of the Taiwan Stock Exchange, finished down 197.16, or 1.79 percent, at 10,811.15 on turnover of NT$177.183 billion (US$5.91 billion).
The market was down across all major sectors, in particular electronics shares, which finished down 1.99 percent from Thursday's close.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), the world's largest wafer foundry and a chip supplier to Apple Inc., closed 1.85 percent lower to end at NT$292.00.
Largan Precision Co., a supplier of smartphone camera lenses to Apple, sank 2.29 percent to close at NT$3,840, while iPhone assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry finished 1.47 percent lower at NT$73.60.
With the U.S. threatening to enforce fresh sanctions on Huawei, analysts said any U.S. attempt to require licenses for sales of semiconductors to Huawei that were made abroad with U.S. technology could seriously affect Taiwan-based IC designers.
MediaTek Inc., a local fabless semiconductor company that provides chips for wireless communications and high-definition television, ended down 4.84 percent at NT$442.00, while Novatek Microelectronics Corp. fell 2.46 percent to NT$198.50.
Realtek Semiconductor Corp. and RichWave Technology Corp. also declined 5.37 percent and 4.64 percent to close at NT$246.50 and NT$144.00, respectively.
Liao Chien-you (廖健佑), an analyst with Capital Investment Management Corp., said Taiwan's stock market was likely to remain in consolidation mode in the near term given that the Taiex closed below the 11,000-point mark.
He cautioned investors not to underestimate the effects of the U.S.-China tug-of-war that shows no sign of ebbing amid mounting uncertainty.
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