European plan boosts TAIEX
The TAIEX continued to gain momentum yesterday as financial heavyweights regained their footing on improved sentiment after Germany approved a plan to expand the European bailout fund, dealers said.
As Germany is the largest creditor to the debt-ridden countries in the eurozone, the market expects other creditor countries to follow suit and ratify the bailout fund expansion plan to resolve the debt crisis in the eurozone, dealers said.
As a result, investors turned upbeat about local financial firms, which are vulnerable to European debt, as concerns over the impact of the debt problems have reduced their bottom lines.
The index closed up 42.77 points, or 0.60 percent, at 7,225.38, after moving between 7,163.75 and 7,251.87 on turnover of NT$90.96 billion (US$2.97 billion).
Government buys back debt
The government bought back two out of four tranches of Treasury bills yesterday, the central bank said in a conference call.
The government bought back NT$30 billion of 364-day securities maturing in April next year at 0.8 percent and NT$29.5 billion of 273-day notes maturing in May next year at 0.8 percent, the bank said.
The government failed to buy back NT$17.6 billion of 273-day bills maturing on Dec. 28 and NT$35 billion of 91-day debt maturing on Dec. 9, the bank said.
Portfolios to be expanded
Securities houses are to be allowed to buy and sell overseas exchangeable corporate bonds, offshore structured products and overseas corporate bonds with warrants, the Financial Supervisory Commission said in a statement yesterday.
Hua Nan inks cross-strait pact
Hua Nan Commercial Bank (華南銀行), the banking arm of Hua Nan Financial Holdings Co (華南金控), signed a business cooperation agreement with China Merchants Bank (中國招商銀行) yesterday, Hua Nan Financial said in a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange.
HTC unveils new smartphone
Smartphone maker HTC Corp (宏達電) unveiled an entry-level smartphone in India yesterday as its latest addition to its product portfolio in emerging markets.
With a 3.2-inch touchscreen and a 300-megapixel camera, the HTC Explorer is aimed at first-time smartphone customers and offers easy access to a variety of Web sites, the company said in a statement.
HTC said the Android-powered phone would be “affordable,” but declined to give a specific price.
The product will be available across key markets in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia in the fourth quarter.
Companies raising paychecks
A total of 17 percent of private enterprises raised their employees’ monthly salaries as of July, a government official said on Thursday.
The average increase for about 30 percent of all workers stood at 3 percent, Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics Minister Shih Su-mei (石素梅) said in a question-and-answer session at the legislature.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕) said the number hinted that up to 83 percent of the private businesses have not raised salaries for their employees and she hoped the government would keep track of the numbers.
“Some companies will adjust [salaries] later on,” while others are giving extra bonuses instead of raising monthly pay, Shih said.
NT dollar loses ground
The New Taiwan dollar lost ground against the US currency yesterday, declining NT$0.066 to close at NT$30.506.