Stocks fell for the first day in five after a government report showed export growth slowed last month as the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) damped consumer spending and kept US and European customers away.
Quanta Computer Inc (
"The fear of SARS has deterred foreign buyers from coming to Taiwan, crippling Taiwanese exporters," said Eric Yang (
"Overseas buyers may start placing orders with rival Korean makers, fearing the outbreak can disrupt production in Taiwan and China." he said.
Taiwan's exports rose 5.6 percent from a year earlier, following a 10 percent gain in March, according to a Ministry of Finance report released on Wednesday after the market closed.
The TAIEX shed 84.66, or 2 percent, to 4,191.25. About nine stocks declined for every one that gained. The Taiwan Futures Index fell 1.9 percent to 4,165.
Quanta Computer, the nation's largest notebook computer maker, fell NT$2, or 3.2 percent, to NT$60.00. Asustek, largest mother-board manufacturer in the country, fell NT$1, or 1.4 percent, to NT$72.
China Airlines shares dropped NT$0.40, or 3.1 percent, to NT$12.40.
EVA Airways fell NT$0.30, or 2.6 percent, to NT$11.20.
Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc (日月光) fell NT$0.40, or 2.1 percent, to NT$18.60. The world's second-largest chip packager reported sales last month rose 16 percent to NT$4.3 billion (US$124 million). Revenue was NT$4 billion in March.
Chunghwa Telecom (
Delta Electronics Inc (
MediaTek Inc (