Sat, Nov 24, 2018 - Page 11 News List

Taiwan Businesss Quick Take

Staff writer, with CNA

EQUITIES

Traders wary before election

Shares in Taiwan yesterday closed below 9,700 points after trading within a narrow range as investors appeared cautious ahead of today’s nine-in-one local elections, dealers said. Many investors stayed on the sidelines, resulting in the lowest turnover for a single day this year, at a time when most large-cap stocks in the electronics and non-technology sectors remained in the doldrums, they said. The TAIEX closed down 47.41 points, or 0.49 percent, at 9,667.30, after moving between 9,654.91 and 9,738.80. Turnover was NT$76.599 billion (US$2.48 billion). Foreign institutional investors bought a net NT$82 million in shares, the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE) said.

ECONOMY

Deposits boost M1B, M2

Last month’s M1B — a measure of the money in circulation — grew 5.31 percent year-on-year from 5.22 percent in September, while M2 — which includes the M1B, time deposits, foreign-currency deposits and mutual funds — saw annual growth increase to 3.39 percent from 3.34 percent, the central bank said in a statement yesterday. The rates were due to growth in passbook savings deposits, the bank said. For the first 10 months, the average annual growth rates of M1B and M2 were 5.3 percent and 3.6 percent respectively, it said.

FINANCE

Interest rates fall slightly

The nation’s five major state-run banks last month saw their average lending interest rates fall to 1.36 percent, down 0.014 percentage points from 1.374 percent in September. The five lenders are Bank of Taiwan (臺灣銀行), Taiwan Cooperative Bank (合庫銀行), Land Bank of Taiwan (土地銀行), Hua Nan Commercial Bank (華南銀行) and First Commercial Bank (第一銀行). The decline reflects falling interest rates applying to loans intended for companies’ working capital and capital expenditure, the central bank said in a statement on Thursday. Excluding government loans, interest rates averaged 1.418 percent, up 0.021 percentage points from 1.397 percent a month earlier, the central bank said.

EQUITIES

TWSE to close 11 days

The TWSE is to close for 11 days during the Lunar New Year holiday next year, it announced on Tuesday. The last trading day is to be on Jan. 30, and it is to reopen on Feb. 11, the TWSE said. Based on statistics from 2000, the only years the exchange had an 11-day holiday were in 2002, 2007 and 2013. According to a calendar released by the Directorate-General of Personnel Administration, the Lunar New Year holiday period is to be from Feb. 2 to Feb. 10.

SEMICONDUCTORS

N America billings up yearly

North America-based manufacturers of semiconductor equipment last month reported worldwide billings of US$2.06 billion, trade group SEMI said in a statement on Tuesday. The three-month average of worldwide billings was 0.9 percent lower than September’s US$2.07 billion, but up 2 percent from US$2.02 billion a year earlier, SEMI said. “October billings of North American equipment suppliers reflect near-term weakening of demand for PCs, mobile phones and servers,” SEMI CEO Ajit Manocha said in a statement. “Additionally, memory manufacturers have pulled back investments in response to recent softening of memory pricing.”

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