Tue, Dec 23, 2008 - Page 11 News List

[BUSINESS BRIEFS]

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

Taiwanese shares fall

Taiwanese shares closed down 3.39 percent yesterday as investors took profits, wiping away early gains made on Beijing’s promise to offer loans to Taiwanese investors in China, dealers said.

The weighted index fell 158.98 points to 4,535.54 on turnover of NT$67.15 billion (US$2.07 billion).

The market opened 0.87 percent higher after Chinese banks promised to offer nearly US$19 billion to China-based Taiwanese firms, but profit taking surfaced as the index moved closer to 4,800 points, dealers said.

The financing was part of a package of measures agreed during a two-day meeting in Shanghai of the Cross-Straits Economic, Trade and Cultural Forum over the weekend.

“The early gains were just a knee-jerk reaction to the loan offer. But we need details to evaluate the benefit,” Concord Securities (康和證券) analyst Allen Lin said.

As Wall Street closed mixed despite a White House rescue plan for the US auto industry, investors remained wary of the deteriorating global economy, Lin said.

“Taiwan is still haunted by falling global consumption. It was no surprise to witness the profit taking,” Lin said.

Flat panel makers also gave up earlier gains on profit taking, although China offered to buy US$2 billion in liquid-crystal-display panels from Taiwan, dealers said.

“The market lacked details about the purchase. That’s why investors were reluctant to chase prices,” Lin said.

Hon Hai stock drops

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海), the world’s largest contract maker of electronics, fell the most in more than a week in Taipei trading after the company said it was cutting jobs globally amid an expected recession.

Hon Hai tumbled 6.6 percent to close at NT$64 on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, the most since Dec. 12.

Hon Hai is “adjusting” its workforce, founder and chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘) said after trading closed on Friday, without giving details.

The severity of the recession is three times worse than the company expected, the United Evening News cited Gou as saying the same day.

The electronics maker’s clients, including Apple Inc and Dell Inc, have forecast sales that missed estimates as the credit crisis undermines demand for computers and mobile phones. Hon Hai also faces higher costs from new labor regulations enacted this year by China, where most of its production is based.

The Taipei-based company employed 602,000 people worldwide as of September, its latest financial statement said.

Taiwan’s export orders fell for the first time in six years in October as the global economic slowdown cut demand for chips, laptops and mobile phones.

AmCham elects chairman

American Chamber of Commerce in Taipei (AmCham) yesterday elected Alan Eusden, president of Corning Display Technologies Taiwan (台灣康寧), to be its chairman next year, replacing the outgoing Christopher Fay.

Eusden, who joined Corning last January, yesterday vowed to continue the chamber’s advocacy role.

“2009 will be a challenging year for all businesses, but our intention is to maintain the chamber’s core strengths while helping to improve the business environment for all of our members,” Eusden said in a press statement.

The chamber yesterday also elected Jeffery Nemeth of Ford Lio Ho (福特六和汽車) to be first vice chairman and William Farrell from Boyden global executive search as second vice chairman, the statement said.

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