A solid week of gains on Wall Street delivered the kind of present most investors were hoping for at Christmas, with blue chips at their highs for the year and prospects upbeat for next year. \nThe Dow Jones Industrial Average of 30 blue-chip companies gained 2.35 percent in the week to Friday to end at 10,278,22, extending its rally to stay well above the psychological 10,000 mark and holding at its highest level since May last year. \nThe NASDAQ composite mean-while edged up 0.1 percent for the week to 1,951.02 and the broad-market Standard & Poor's 500 index rallied 1.35 percent to 1,088.66. \nInvestors appear content to sit on their gains after a rally of more than nine months that has pushed the Dow up some 37 percent from lows in mid-March. \nIn the same period the NASDAQ has surged 53 percent and the S&P 500 has gained 36 percent. \nOver the past week, the event that first appeared as a strong catalyst -- the capture of former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein -- fizzled out, even though the markets managed to move higher later in the week. \nSmith Barney equity strategist Tobias Levkovich cautioned investors against betting too much on a single event. \nLimited effect \n"Terrorism is unlikely to stop as a result and regional stability was never just one arrest away," Levkovich said. \nPaul Nolte, director of investments at Hinsdale Associates, said the harder task would be to determine what happens next. \n"Eventually it [the capture of Saddam] was to happen, and the reaction would be predictable, however we can also argue rather convincingly that it does little to alter the US economy and change corporate/consumer attitudes about spending," Nolte said. \nWhile investors appear to be rejoicing over the holiday season, strategists are plotting their course for next year with some caution. Even though the economic backdrop appears favorable, a repeat of this strong year appears unlikely. \n"We think that the economic cycle is in a later stage than many observers believe it is," said Richard Bernstein at Merrill Lynch. \nWhile smaller companies helped the NASDAQ to outsized gains this year, Bernstein and others say more established companies will take over the leadership. \n"The stock market has gone through a textbook sector rotation during the past couple of years ... Based on that rotation, we continue to think that investors should shift their portfolios toward later-cycle stocks such as those in the materials and energy sectors," he said. \nSung Won Sohn at Wells Fargo Bank said Wall Street will be keeping a close watch on the Federal Reserve and its moves to boost interst rates, which is likely to happen sometime next year. \n"The current bull market will continue as long as the central bank pursues easy monetary policy," he said. \nDiscount rate \n"Equities do not perform well when the Federal Reserve raises the fed funds rate, leading to higher bond yields. It increases the effective discount rate for equities ... In any case, 2004 will be a challenging year for equities," Sohn said. \nEconomic growth will slow and the earnings momentum will lose steam. Under these circumstances, the stock market will be volatile and won't be as vibrant as 2003 has been," Sohn said. \nBonds firmed on expectations of low inflation and low interest rates from the Fed. \nThe yield on the 10-year US Treasury bond dipped to 4.133 percent from 4.242 percent a week earlier and that on the 30-year bond to 4.961 percent from 5.088 percent. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions.
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
EXPERIMENTAL DRUG: While news about a COVID-19 vaccine is more eye-catching, developing a treatment would be more viable, the Senhwa boss said Senhwa Biosciences Inc (生華科) aims to raise NT$1.5 billion (US$50.57 million) by issuing 15 million new common shares in the third quarter of this year to fund the research of new drugs, including the experimental drug Silmitasertib for the treatment of COVID-19, the company said on Monday. That would be the firm’s largest fundraising effort after it raised more than NT$1.4 billion from an initial public offering on the Taipei Exchange (TPEX) in April 2017, chief financial officer Sarah Chang (張小萍) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The price of the new shares would depend on the firm’s average share price
NOT A PANACEA: Offering 5G services would not solve the problem of declining telecom incomes, chairman Sheih Chi-mau said, expecting a flat 5G telecom revenue Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday became the nation’s first telecom to debut its 5G services, offering tiered tariffs that include a threshold of NT$599 and flat rates, as it aims to switch half of its subscribers to the 5G network within three years. Subscribers would have unlimited data transmission for monthly fees starting at NT$1,399 — the same flat rate as when the company launched its 4G service in 2014 — and they can subscribe to the highest-rate plan for NT$2,699 per month for faster data transmission speeds and larger bandwidth, the company said. Data transmission speeds would be within the range
ROW: A probe would determine if the rights of shareholders who were not allowed to vote yesterday had been violated, while the stock exchange also wants answers The election of board directors yesterday at Tatung Co (大同) sparked controversy after the company blocked some institutional and individual shareholders from participating in the general shareholders’ meeting, prompting the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) to announce that the vote would be investigated. Lin Kuo Wen-yen (林郭文艷) was re-elected as chairwoman of the household-appliance maker’s nine-member board, but prior to the vote she announced that several shareholders would not have voting rights. They were being denied a vote because they had contravened the Business Mergers and Acquisitions Act (企業併購法), and the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and