Fri, Sep 16, 2005 - Page 11 News List

CSFB raises ratings for TSMC and other Asian chipmakers

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Taiwan Semiconductor Manu-facturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) and other Asian producers of made-to-order chips were raised to "overweight" by Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB), which said the companies' share prices lag behind other technology stocks.

Shares of TSMC, the world's largest supplier of made-to-order chips, have risen 0.7 percent since May 31, underperforming the 3.6 percent gain in the TAIEX' electronics index. The stock was steady at NT$53.00 yesterday.

"Foundries have been the worst performing sub-sector within tech since the end of May," analysts Manish Nigam and Venugopal Garre wrote in a report dated Thursday. "We are fairly confident about tech end demand."

United Microelectronics Corp (UMC, 聯電), the next biggest maker of made-to-order chips, was also upgraded by CSFB. The 12-month target price was raised to NT$26 from NT$23. Shares of UMC fell 0.49 percent to NT$20.50 and have advanced 6.9 percent since May 31 and 11 percent this year.

CSFB joins Citigroup Inc and JPMorgan Chase & Co in projecting chip demand won't falter. TSMC Chief Executive Rick Tsai (蔡力行) said on Wednesday that sales of chips for electronics will rise 5 percent this year and as much as 9 percent next year.

Shares of Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing Ltd (特許), Southeast Asia's largest made-to-order chipmaker, rose 0.9 percent to S$1.18 (US$0.70). Shares of Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (中芯), China's biggest made-to-order chipmaker, fell 1.3 percent to HK$1.53 (US$0.20). The stock has gained 0.7 percent since May 31.

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