TAIEX closes slightly higher
The TAIEX held its breath to close slightly higher yesterday after a rally in the previous session as the market faced stiff technical resistance ahead of 7,500 points, dealers said.
The financial sector suffered profit-taking pressure throughout the session, while select high-tech stocks, which reported better second quarter results, posted gains that prevented the broader market from falling into negative territory, they said.
The weighted index closed up 7.42 points or 0.10 percent, at 7,441.12 points, on turnover of NT$93.94 billion (US$3.14 billion). Prior to yesterday’s session, the local bourse had risen almost 3 percent since Aug. 3.
Quality counts, minister says
Taiwanese firms should optimize their industrial structures, provide value-added services and strengthen their competitiveness as the government works on free- trade agreements (FTAs) with other countries, Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Francis Liang (梁國新) said yesterday.
“What’s important is to enhance the quality of our products,” Liang said at a seminar to discuss Taiwan-US trade cooperation.
“Although FTAs can boost exports and sales, it is the quality of products themselves that is more critical,” he added.
Switzerland, he pointed out, does not have many FTAs with other countries, but its watches remain competitive around the globe.
He added that if basic technologies are strong enough, a lack of zero-tariff treatment might have less of an impact on exports.
Crude oil imports fall
The nation’s crude-oil imports dropped 8.6 percent year-on-year in June to 21.6 million barrels, the Bureau of Energy said in a monthly report issued yesterday. The June figure represented a decline of 20 percent from the previous month, the report said.
State-run CPC Corp, Taiwan (台灣中油) and privately owned Formosa Petrochemical Corp (台塑石化), the nation’s only two refiners, processed a combined 3.9 million kiloliters of crude oil, a decrease of 7.5 percent from May, the report said.
Overall, Taiwan’s energy consumption fell 6.6 percent in June from a year earlier, according to the report.
Fire at Kaohsiung refinery
Production at CPC Corp, Taiwan’s (台灣中油) Talin oil refinery in Greater Kaohsiung was unaffected after a fire yesterday in a unit that was shut for maintenance.
The blaze occurred in a residue desulfurization unit following a gas leak, the company said. The unit, which removes sulfur from residual fuel, was halted on Aug. 8 for maintenance scheduled to last as long as 40 days, it said. The fire is now under control, it added.
Acer revenue falls
Acer Inc’s (宏碁) non-consolidated revenue was NT$22.66 billion (US$765.31 million) last month, representing a 43.01 percent decline from NT$39.75 billion in June and a 26.15 percent decline from NT$30.68 billion a year earlier, the company said in a statement yesterday.
Looking to the third quarter, Acer said it expected demand to remain lukewarm before the launch of the Windows 8 operating system in the fourth quarter
The company said it would offer a more detailed business update and industry outlook at a conference call with analysts, scheduled for Friday.
NT dollar falls
The New Taiwan dollar fell against the US dollar yesterday, declining NT$0.05 to close at NT$29.990.
Turnover totaled US$732 million during the trading session.