Sat, Apr 12, 2008 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

TAIEX closes higher

Share prices closed 0.91 percent higher yesterday with investors waiting for vice president-elect Vincent Siew (蕭萬長), who is attending an economic forum in China, to outline a new blueprint for Taiwan’s economic development, dealers said.

The weighted index closed up 80.18 points at 8,909.58, after moving in the range of 8,840.04 and 8,937.12, on turnover of NT$203.18 billion (US$6.71 billion).

Risers led decliners 1,236 to 982, with 330 stocks unchanged. A total of 29 stocks closed limit-up, while 14 were limit-down.

In the week to yesterday, the weighted index closed up 313.24 points or 3.64 percent at 8,909.58 after a 0.31 percent decline a week earlier. Average daily turnover stood at NT$147.43 billion, compared with NT$136.61 billion a week ago.

FAT shareholders want NT$3.16

Shareholders at Far Eastern Air Transport Co (FAT, 遠東航空 ) yesterday approved a private placement proposal to help improve its financial strength.

At an extraordinary shareholder meeting held yesterday, Far Eastern Air shareholders demanded that its management sell a big tranche of securities to the interested investors at a price of no less than NT$3.16 per share.

Shareholders criticized the management for planning to sell the company too cheap, as the board of directors had earlier proposed selling new shares to potential investors at a price of no less than NT$1 per share.

But management expressed concern that the NT$3.16 offer might not work to attract new investors, as the company reported a net value of only NT$1.597 as of the end of February.

Realtek shares plummet

Realtek Semiconductor Corp’s (瑞昱半導體) share price yesterday fell the most in almost two months after the chip designer lost a patent lawsuit to 3Com Corp, prompting Goldman, Sachs & Co to cut its investment rating on the stock.

Realtek slid by the daily limit of 7 percent, the most since Feb. 12, to close at NT$89.20 on the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

The Hsinchu-based company was ordered to pay 3Com US$45.3 million after a federal jury in San Francisco found on April 9 that Realtek willfully infringed three 3Com patents.

Goldman downgraded the stock to “neutral” from “buy” and lowered their 12-month share-price estimate to NT$90 from NT$118.

THSRC expects new milestone

Taiwan High Speed Rail Corp (THSRC, 台灣高鐵) said yesterday that with passenger volume continuing to rise, it is now expecting the 23 millionth passenger, a number equal to the nation’s total population.

THSRC officials said that, as of Thursday, the company had sold 22,873,331 high speed rail tickets, and they think that it will see the 23 millionth passenger in the next few days.

To celebrate yet another milestone in the system, the officials said they were preparing to present the 23 millionth passenger with 23 business-class tickets as well as high speed rail memorabilia.

The passenger volume and revenues reached 2.31 million and NT$1.903 billion last month, both setting records in a single month.

The passenger volume broke the threshold of 1 million on Jan. 22 last year; 10 million on Sept. 18 last year, and 20 million on March 7.

NT dollar loses ground

The New Taiwan dollar lost ground against the greenback after the central bank and oil firms bought US dollars, dealers said.

The NT dollar dropped NT$0.011 to close at NT$30.319 on the Taipei Foreign Exchange yesterday. A total of US$1.342 billion changed hands during the day’s trading.

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