TAIEX downed by bird flu scare
The TAIEX tumbled by more than 2 percent yesterday, as investors pulled out amid a bird flu scare in China and heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula, dealers said.
The market, which was closed on Thursday and Friday for the Tomb Sweeping Festival, opened sharply lower yesterday, reflecting similar drops in markets late last week in South Korea and Hong Kong.
It failed to gain positive momentum the rest of the session.
The weighted index closed down 189.56 points, or 2.39 percent, at 7,752.79, on turnover of NT$88.94 billion (US$2.96 billion).
The market’s downward spiral caught the attention of Vice Minister of Finance William Tseng (曾銘宗), who said that the government was watching to see whether it should activate the National Stabilization Fund mechanism.
Tseng later downplayed the idea, citing the more than 2 percent gains in Japan and only a limited fall on the South Korean bourse despite the simmering tensions.
E. Sun first-quarter profit up
E. Sun Financial Holding Co (玉山金控) yesterday reported a first-quarter net income of NT$2.24 billion, up 8.1 percent from a year earlier and 64.7 percent from the preceding quarter, the company said in a statement.
The quarterly results translated into earnings per share (EPS) of NT$0.45, it said.
The bank-focused conglomerate also reported that it earned NT$734.25 million in net profit last month, or EPS of NT$0.15.
First SITC gets China approval
State-run First Securities Investment Trust Co (第一金投信, First SITC), the asset management arm of First Financial Holding Co (第一金控), said in a stock exchange filing yesterday it had won approval from China to invest up to US$50 million (NT$1.5 billion) in Chinese securities on the open market.
The approval came after Taiwan’s regulator last month banned First SITC from creating new funds or applying for new business operations after former employees were accused of mishandling assets under their management.
Cathay buys Chinatrust shares
Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽), the life insurance arm of Cathay Financial Holding Co (國泰金控), yesterday said it had subscribed to 21.42 million preferred shares of Chinatrust Financial Holding Co (中信金控) to boost financial efficiency.
The preferred stock is valued at NT$15 per share, or NT$321.35 million in total, the insurer said.
The deal implied a discount of 17.58 percent based on Chinatrust’s closing price of NT$18.20 per share yesterday, down 0.82 percent from the last trading session.
Pegatron on show at Milan
After a two-year absence, Pegatron Corp (和碩), the PC manufacturing arm of Asustek Computer Inc (華碩), attended this year’s Milan Design Week 2013, showcasing furniture under the theme “Now & New,” Debbie Huang (黃華郁), head of Pegatron’s exhibition project at the show, said in a statement yesterday.
Pegatron is exhibiting furniture with specially designed interactive interfaces at the fair, which runs until Monday next week, to show visitors how technology changes the ways people live their daily lives.
NT falls past 30 mark
The New Taiwan dollar lost ground against the US dollar yesterday, declining NT$0.135 to close at NT$30.060, on turnover of US$1.07 billion.