Wed, May 03, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Investors more positive, poll says

By Jackie Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

The latest investor sentiment index improved to a two-year high, aided by the stock market's recovery and expectations of further relaxation in cross-strait trade, a bimonthly survey conducted by a university showed yesterday.

The latest report showed the index at minus 2.3 points, a big improvement from minus 64.6 percent in the previous report, said Kuo Nai-fong (郭迺鋒), an associate professor and chair of the finance department at Shih Hsin University, during a press conference.

The survey, conducted between April 20 and April 23, interviewed 1,079 respondents about their expectations for the next three to six months.

The majority of the respondents expressed optimism about the short-term outlook, with 63.3 percent saying they believed their stock investments could reach their target in three months.

The TAIEX rose 27.83 points, or 0.39 percent, to close at 7,199.60 yesterday.

Turnover was NT$142.48 billion (US$4.47 billion), supported by buying from both local and foreign institutional investors.

With the latest wave of positive earnings announcements from technology companies, net buying by foreign investors totaled NT$4.18 billion yesterday. This follows net foreign purchases of NT$31.95 billion last week, according to the stock exchange's statistics.

"Investors do not think that the stock market will be affected by economic growth, unemployment or consumer price fluctuations. They are bullish about the TAIEX's performance in the next three months," Kuo said.

He cited the recent easing of cross-strait restrictions for the confidence boost.

"Apparently investors think that the Chinese Nationalist Party's [KMT] move to push forth cross-strait interaction should favor economic development, which helped drive up the stock market," he said.

Former KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰) met Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) on April 16.

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