Sat, Apr 25, 2009 - Page 11 News List

Home mortgages rise for first time in three months

BLOOMBERG

Taiwan’s home mortgages rose for the first time in three months last month as the stock market surged and companies said they expected business to improve.

Individual housing loans from Taiwan’s top five state-owned banks climbed 38 percent from February to NT$48 billion ($1.45 billion), the first increase since December, the central bank said in a statement this week.

“Home sales in March increased for the first time in nine months and naturally that would boost mortgage value,” said Wey Jang-jyh (魏彰志), a property analyst at Fubon Securities Co (富邦證券). “Taiwan’s home market has a close correlation with the performance of the local equity market.”

The Taiex stock index advanced 28 percent this year, the sixth best-performing among the top 10 indexes tracked by Bloomberg’s 89-member global stock index.

The transaction volume of apartments in Taiwan increased about 30 percent last month from February, said Sinyi Realty Co (信義房屋), Taiwan’s biggest property broker.

Homebuyer confidence may have risen after AU Optronics Corp (友達光電), Taiwan’s biggest maker of liquid-crystal displays for TVs and computers, and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (台積電), the world’s largest maker of chips designed by other companies, said last month they ended unpaid leave starting on April 1 after getting orders from China and other emerging markets.

Monthly sales at AU Optronics will rise sequentially for the rest of the year as demand increases, chief executive officer Chen Lai- juh (陳來助) said on March 19.

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