Fri, Jun 20, 2008 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

Stock market hits low

The Taiwanese stock market hit a three-month low yesterday as the weighted index dropped more than 2 percent after Wall Street’s losses overnight, dealers said.

The index shed 169.84 points down to 8047.74, off 2.07 percent in the face of worries about inflation and a slowdown in the US. The previous low was 8005.46 on March 17.

Turnover was NT$82.54 billion (US$2.72 billion). Decliners led risers 2,040 to 311, with 309 stocks unchanged.

“There’s no news in the region. Asian markets are all tracking the US, which is plagued by concerns over inflation and a slowing economy,” said Bill Huang at KGI Securities (中信證券).

He said local shares may continue to decline for the next few sessions due to the volatile US market.

“If it breaks 7900, it will tumble all the way,” Huang said, adding that big technology firms like flat-panel and semiconductor makers would lead falls because of their large US client bases.

Formosa has high hopes

Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團), Taiwan’s biggest diversified industrial company, expects a planned steel plant in Vietnam will generate sales of NT$131.9 billion a year.

The mill, construction of which will start next month, is expected to begin production in four years, Lee Chih-tsuen (李志村), a member of the group’s executive committee, said on Thursday. Investment, including a supporting port, will total US$7.99 billion, Lee said at a shareholder meeting of unit Formosa Plastics Corp (台塑).

“We’re expanding production to ensure stable sales growth,” Lee said.

TSMC head turns down offer

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) chairman Morris Chang (張忠謀) has turned down a Cabinet invitation to join the government’s new tax reform task force, according to a company statement released yesterday.

The statement said Vice Premier Paul Chiu (邱正雄), who is in charge of the tax reform task force, had called Chang earlier yesterday and invited the chipmaking guru to become a member of the team, but was turned down.

Earlier this month, Chang said the government should increase tax rates on people with annual income higher than NT$3 million and cut rates on those with lower incomes, as a part of its tax reforms.

UBS to offer ADRs

UBS AG is selling about US$26 million in American depositary receipts (ADRs) in Siliconware Precision Industries Co (矽品精密) for shareholders Lin Wen Dong and Wang Li Ping.

The brokerage is offering 3.6 million ADRs for between US$7.20 and US$7.35, UBS said in an e-mail to clients.

GigaMedia sues Chunghwa

Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), the nation’s largest telephone operator, said it has been sued by GigaMedia Ltd (和信超媒體) for patent infringement.

Chunghwa Telecom received a notification from the Taipei District Court about the lawsuit, in which GigaMedia asked for NT$500 million (US$16 million), the phone operator said in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange on Wednesday.

GigaMedia provides online entertainment software and services. In the filing, Chunghwa Telecom denied the allegation.

NT dollar falls further

The NT dollar dropped against the US dollar yesterday, declining NT$0.027 to close at NT$30.380 on the Taipei Forex Inc.

A total of US$975 million changed hands during the day’s trading.

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