Wed, Jul 30, 2003 - Page 11 News List

TAIEX decreases 2 percent

BLOOMBERG

Stocks fell yesterday. China Steel Corp (中鋼) dropped on a report a state-run labor retirement fund plans to sell 80 million of its shares, or 0.9 percent of the company.

The retirement fund will start selling China Steel shares today, the company said in a statement to the exchange.

The TAIEX fell 109.34, or 2 percent, to 5,342.46. About six stocks declined for every one that gained. August futures on the benchmark fell 2.2 percent to 5,355.

About 4.6 billion shares changed hands, 6 percent above the average trading in the past three months. The value of trading was NT$103.4 billion, 13 percent above the three-month daily average.

The index has rallied 29 percent in the past three months, since reaching a six-month low in April.

"An increasing number of investors are selling stocks into the current rally," said Simon Chao (趙永宏), who manages US$17 million at President Investment Trust Corp (統一投信).

"Some disappointing profit reports are making investors more keen to cut their holdings," he said.

China Steel fell NT$1.70, or 6.5 percent, to NT$24.30.

Macronix International Co (旺宏), the nation's largest maker of memory chips for electronic games, fell NT$0.55, or 6.1 percent, to NT$8.45. The company reported after the market closed Monday a loss of NT$3 billion (US$87 million) in the three months ended June 30, its seventh straight unprofitable quarter. The second-quarter loss narrowed from NT$4.5 billion the same quarter a year earlier because of better cost controls, the company said.

Cathay Financial Holding Co (國泰金控) fell NT$2.90, or 6.8 percent, to NT$39.80 after a Chinese-language newspaper reported that it will offer a 5 percent discount on as much as US$1 billion of shares it's selling to overseas investors.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (台積電), the world's No. 1 supplier of made-to-order semiconductors, closed down NT$1.00 at NT$57. Its 1.64 billion new shares are due to start trading tomorrow.

United Microelectronics Corp (聯電) fell NT$0.10, or 0.4 percent, to NT$24.90, ahead of its second quarter earnings report due today. The company is scheduled to make available 665.90 million new shares for trading on Aug. 8.

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