Thu, Jan 12, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Stocks climb as investors regain trust in tech firms

AP , TAIPEI

Shares rose yesterday on a bullish demand outlook for technology goods in the first quarter.

The TAIEX climbed 28.49 points, or 0.43 percent, to 6,735.89, approaching the index's 20-month high of 6,742.39 on Monday. Turnover was NT$133.58 billion (US$4.16 billion).

Makers of thin-film-transistor (TFT) liquid-crystal-display (LCD) panels led the rise as investors regained confidence in demand for their products.

"Sentiment toward the TFT-LCD industry is still positive," said Bill Huang, a trader at KGI Securities Co (中信證券). "Previous concerns over oversupply were overdone, so some investors bought on bargains."

AU Optronics Corp (友達光電), the nation's largest and the world's No. 3 maker of TFT-LCD panels by shipments, rose 3.9 percent to NT$49.85.

The company's closest rival, Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corp (奇美電子), was up 3.7 percent to NT$47.2.

The gains followed a statement by glassmaker Corning Inc that it expects global demand for glass used to produce LCDs to triple by 2007 from the 45 million square meters recorded in 2004.

Construction shares as a whole advanced 3.4 percent as house sales remain strong, led by Hung Sheng Construction Ltd (宏盛建設), which surged by the daily limit of 7 percent to NT$24.5.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manu-facturing Co (台積電), the world's largest made-to-order chipmaker, closed down 1.35 percent at NT$65.80, while rival United Microelectronics Corp (聯電) was steady at NT$18.55 despite reports it may be fined up to NT$25 million for allegedly investing illegally in China.

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