Asian markets mostly declined on Friday after US Vice President Mike Pence claimed that China had meddled with the upcoming US midterm elections to unsettle the administration of US President Donald Trump, which Beijing has denied.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 0.7 percent to 159.65, down 3.4 percent for the week.
In Taipei, the TAIEX on Friday closed down 201.79 points, or 1.88 percent, at 10,517.12.
It was the worst performer in Asia this week, as a stronger US dollar led to heavy fund outflows, First Securities Investment Trust Co (第一金投信) said.
The index fell 4.44 percent on the week, worse than the 4.09 percent decline on Indonesia’s main board, company data showed.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 on Friday fell 0.8 percent to 23,783.72 and the KOSPI in South Korea dropped 0.3 percent to 2,267.51 points.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.1 percent to 26,596.21 points.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.2 percent to 6,185.50 points.
Stocks fell in Singapore and Indonesia.
Markets in China were closed for a national holiday.
China took public and covert measures to interfere in the next month’s elections, Pence said.
These include targeting Chinese tariffs to industries in states that are crucial to Trump, intimidating academics and coercing US businesses to speak out against the Trump administration, he said.
Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Hua Chunying (華春瑩) said Pence’s allegations were “groundless.”
Shares in Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) and ZTE Corp (中興通訊) tumbled in Hong Kong after Bloomberg reported that China had inserted tiny chips into servers and computer equipment manufactured for the US to steal its technology secrets, citing corporate and government sources.
Apple Inc and Amazon.com Inc dismissed the report.
Lenovo said Super Micro Computer Inc was not a supplier “in any capacity.”
However, its shares fell as much as 20 percent on Friday, recouping some of that to end down 16 percent. ZTE was off 11 percent.
“Risk sentiments remain fragile, especially with overnight news about China’s tiny chip hack and US Vice President Mike Pence’s tough words on China’s alleged interference in US politics, which could point to a further escalation of the ongoing US-China trade war,” Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp chief economist Selena Ling said.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg and CNA
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
EXPERIMENTAL DRUG: While news about a COVID-19 vaccine is more eye-catching, developing a treatment would be more viable, the Senhwa boss said Senhwa Biosciences Inc (生華科) aims to raise NT$1.5 billion (US$50.57 million) by issuing 15 million new common shares in the third quarter of this year to fund the research of new drugs, including the experimental drug Silmitasertib for the treatment of COVID-19, the company said on Monday. That would be the firm’s largest fundraising effort after it raised more than NT$1.4 billion from an initial public offering on the Taipei Exchange (TPEX) in April 2017, chief financial officer Sarah Chang (張小萍) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The price of the new shares would depend on the firm’s average share price
NOT A PANACEA: Offering 5G services would not solve the problem of declining telecom incomes, chairman Sheih Chi-mau said, expecting a flat 5G telecom revenue Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday became the nation’s first telecom to debut its 5G services, offering tiered tariffs that include a threshold of NT$599 and flat rates, as it aims to switch half of its subscribers to the 5G network within three years. Subscribers would have unlimited data transmission for monthly fees starting at NT$1,399 — the same flat rate as when the company launched its 4G service in 2014 — and they can subscribe to the highest-rate plan for NT$2,699 per month for faster data transmission speeds and larger bandwidth, the company said. Data transmission speeds would be within the range
ROW: A probe would determine if the rights of shareholders who were not allowed to vote yesterday had been violated, while the stock exchange also wants answers The election of board directors yesterday at Tatung Co (大同) sparked controversy after the company blocked some institutional and individual shareholders from participating in the general shareholders’ meeting, prompting the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) to announce that the vote would be investigated. Lin Kuo Wen-yen (林郭文艷) was re-elected as chairwoman of the household-appliance maker’s nine-member board, but prior to the vote she announced that several shareholders would not have voting rights. They were being denied a vote because they had contravened the Business Mergers and Acquisitions Act (企業併購法), and the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and