Fri, Jul 18, 2003 - Page 11 News List

Business briefs 


Limit on GDRs scrapped

The government is scrapping a rule preventing investors from converting global depositary receipts (GDRs) into the underlying shares for three months after the securities are listed, the Securities and Futures Commission said yesterday.

The rule change takes effect immediately, according to the commission.

GDRs are a negotiable certificate held in the bank of one country representing a specific number of shares of a stock traded on an exchange of another country.

The rule change may attract investors seeking to profit from the difference between the stock price in Taiwan and overseas.

State-owned firms' profits up

The pre-tax profits of all state-own companies for the first half of the year are NT$12.5 billion, an increase of NT$1.53 billion compared to the same period last year, the Ministry of Economic Affairs announced on Wednesday.

Among 10 state-run firms, Taiwan Power Co (台電) was the most profitable, raking in NT$5.68 billion in pre-tax profits, an increase of NT$4.63 billion from a goal set by the government for the year.

Chinese Petroleum Corp (中油) came in second with NT$5.92 billion, followed by the Tang End Iron Works Co (唐榮公司), which gained NT$1.23 billion.

Taiwan Sugar Corp 台糖) lost NT$960 million and the Aerospace Industrial Development Corp (漢翔公司) had a deficit of NT$270 million, the ministry press release said.

Discount offered on Chunghwa

The government plans to offer a 2 percent discount to overseas investors in today's sale of a 13.8 percent stake in Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), a Chinese-language newspaper reported, without citing the source of its information.

The government plans to raise about US$2 billion, bundling 1.11 billion shares, or an 11.5 percent stake, into depositary receipts for listing on the New York Stock Exchange, an official at the Ministry of Transportation and Communications said on Tuesday.

It may sell another 220 million shares, or a 2.3 percent stake, pending demand, the official said.

Fubon Financial profit soars

Fubon Financial Holding Co (富邦金控), a Taipei-based lender that's 10 percent-owned by Citigroup Inc, said first-half net income rose 79 percent as lending income countered a "poor" performance from its brokerage business.

Fubon Financial had net income of NT$9.03 billion (US$262 million) in the six months to June 30, up from NT$5.04 billion in the year-earlier period, it said in a statement.

"Fubon will continue to see its banking units doing better than the others, helping make up for the poor performance of its securities businesses,'' said Nora Hou, a banking analyst at ING Groep NV in Taipei.

``Fubon is expected to achieve its earnings target this year,'' she said.

University builds mini car

Southern Taiwan University of Technology announced yesterday that it has developed a two-seat, 157-cc mini car, with a maximum speed of 50kph.

Kuo Tsung-yuan (郭聰源), who heads the research and development of the mini car, said the 2.4m car has a weight of between 220kg to 250kg. He said the idea of developing the car sprang from considerations of conserving energy, reducing pollution and addressing the deficiencies of electric cars.

NT dollar dips

The New Taiwan dollar yesterday fell NT$0.010 against its US counterpart to close at NT$34.420 on the Taipei foreign exchange market. Turnover was US$453 million.

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