Wed, Feb 14, 2007 - Page 11 News List

TAIEX falls on Wall Street losses, Ma's indictment

By Jessie Ho  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH AFP

Share prices closed 0.51 percent lower yesterday after Wall Street extended losses overnight ahead of the release of a series of US economic data and comments from US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, dealers said.

The market was also affected after Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) was indicted for corruption, they said.

The weighted index lost 39.53 points at 7,736.83, off a high of 7,800.87 and a low of 7,725.81, on turnover of NT$81.05 billion (US$2.46 billion).

"The market extended its recent pattern of rangebound consolidation with a negative bias as people got ready for a market break of almost two weeks," SinoPac Securities (永豐金證券) assistant vice president Alvin Teng (鄧可欣) said.

Today is the last day of trading before the market closes for the Lunar New Year holidays. It reopens on Feb. 26.

Ma's indictment was expected to depress the market today, but his announcement that he would still run for the presidency would ease the blow, Mega Securities Corp (兆豐證券) assistant vice president Alex Huang (黃國偉) said.

Without the announcement, "The benchmark TAIEX may lose more than 100 points [today], with stocks related to investments in China likely to see the heaviest selling," Huang said.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manu-facturing Co (台積電) fell NT$1.20 at NT$65.80 and United Microelectronics Corp (聯電) was down NT$0.45 at NT$19.95.

Makers of thin-film transistor LCD panels were mostly lower, while DRAM makers were largely higher. AU Optronics Corp (友達光電) was down NT$1.05 at NT$47.05 and Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corp (奇美電子)fell NT$0.40 to NT$32.60.

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