Tue, May 01, 2012 - Page 11 News List

[ BUSINESS BRIEFS ]

Staff writer, with Agencies

TAIEX rises on financial stocks

The TAIEX rose 0.28 percent yesterday, backed by gains in financial stocks, but volume remained at a relatively low level as investors continued to grapple with uncertainties hanging over the local bourse.

The benchmark index ranged between a high of 7,501.72 and a low of 7,422.14 before closing up 21.22 points at 7,501.72 on turnover of NT$70.17 billion (US$2.41 billion).

Trading volume for all of last month shrank to about NT$1.55 trillion, or an average of NT$77.62 billion per session, about 24 percent lower than the average in March and 45 percent lower than in February.

Most of the market’s eight major sectors closed up, with food shares scoring the highest gains at 2.2 percent, but plastics and chemical shares slipped 0.3 percent. In total, 1,831 stocks closed up, 2,155 finished down and 435 remained unchanged.

NT$35 billion bonds sold

Taiwan sold NT$35 billion (US$1.2 billion) of 30-year bonds at 1.835 percent yesterday. It also auctioned NT$25 billion of 182-day Treasury bills at 0.835 percent.

The yield on the government’s 1 percent bonds due January 2017 was little changed yesterday and this month at 0.996 percent, according to GRETAI Securities Market.

The overnight interbank lending rate was also little changed at 0.503 percent, according to a weighted average compiled by the Taiwan Interbank Money Center. It reached 0.507 percent on Friday, the highest level since 2008.

Taishin denies insurer talks

Taishin Financial Holdings Co (台新金控) said in a stock filing yesterday that local media reports of it holding talks to buy New York Life Insurance Co’s Taiwan unit were pure speculation.

The clarification came after local media said it was in exclusive talks to acquire the unprofitable insurer.

Taishin Financial, which has substantial cash reserves, said in March it was interested in buying a life insurance unit to boost synergy benefits,

New York Life Taiwan reportedly approached Taishin Financial for the acquisition talk after its cumulative losses reached NT$3.67 billion (US$125.44 million) as of last year, local media said.

Taiwanese goods well received

An exhibition of Taiwanese-made products held in the capital city of Guangxi Province, China, saw orders worth more than US$100 million on its opening day, Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) chairman Wang Chih-kang (王志剛) said on Sunday.

The exposition in Nanning recorded sales of US$137 million on Saturday, with orders placed by purchasing groups from ASEAN totaling US$103 million, Wang said.

DNR, the second-largest health product company in Indonesia, placed orders for nutritional drinks worth US$1 million, while other companies showed interest in cooperating with Taiwan in tea extraction technology, TAITRA said.

NT dollar at eight-month high

The New Taiwan dollar rose to its strongest level in almost eight months on speculation that local corporations are repatriating funds as the month ends.

The NT dollar gained 0.3 percent to NT$29.232 against its US counterpart, according to Taipei Forex Inc. It touched NT$29.11 earlier, the strongest level since Sept. 8.

Insurance companies are selling the US dollar, according to Tarsicio Tong (湯健揚), a currency trader at Union Bank of Taiwan (聯邦銀行).

The NT dollar rallied more than 1 percent in the past three days, but the pace should slow when financial markets re-open after the Labor Day holiday tomorrow, he said.

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