Business Briefs


Thu, Aug 20, 2009 - Page 11

Shares close flat

Taiwanese shares closed flat yesterday after selling had offset early gains sparked by a rebound on Wall Street, dealers said.

The TAIEX index edged down 1.19 points, or 0.02 percent, to 6,788.58 on turnover of NT$70.56 billion (US$2.14 billion).

Gainers outnumbered losers 1,103 to 970, while 211 stocks were unchanged.

“The overnight Wall Street rebound led to the early gains, but it did little help to the weak market,” which has been haunted by the tumble of Chinese markets over the past two weeks, Capital Securities (群益證券) analyst Chen Yu-yu (陳育娛) said.

The thin trade signaled that investors chose to stay on the sidelines, Chen said, adding that he expected the market to seek support at a range of 6,600-6,700 in the coming week and may test 6,300-6,400 within a month.

Housing market suffers glut

The housing market in northern Taiwan is experiencing a glut and it may take another 18 months for the region’s developers to sell newly built homes, the Chinese-language Housing Monthly reported yesterday.

The monthly said that vacant homes in Keelung and Taipei City and Taipei, Taoyuan and Hsinchu counties numbered 41,791 units as of the middle of this year, with a total value of NT$376 billion (US$11.4 billion).

On average, the monthly said the housing sector closes NT$220 billion in property sales a year and that it would therefore take another 18 months or more for developers to close deals even if new housing projects are not launched.

Garmin-Asus phone launches

Asustek Computer Inc (華碩) yesterday launched a Garmin-Asus brandname smartphone in conjunction with Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信).

The nuvifone M20, which uses location-based service (LBS) technology, is available at retail stores for NT$17,900 (US$543) as a stand-alone unit.

Asustek chairman Jonney Shih (施崇棠) said the company would donate 10,000 units to rescue crew in the disaster area damaged by Typhoon Morakot.

Chunghwa may offer use of the phone for free through various package deals next month, said Hu Hsueh-hai (胡學海), managing director of Chunghwa’s mobile business group.

Trade group buys big

A Chinese trade group, including Chongqing Hybest Air Tools Co (重慶弘願工具) and 54 other companies, plans to buy about US$900 million in goods from Taiwan, the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA, 外貿協會) said in a statement yesterday.

The companies would purchase machinery, chemical products, electronic goods, automobile parts and textiles, the statement said.

Cash-for-clunker TVs

Japan’s Sony Corp yesterday launched a scheme in Britain to encourage cash-strapped consumers to swap old TVs for new ones in a plan that mirrors worldwide car scrappage initiatives.

Sony said in a statement that it would offer customers reductions of as much as £150 (US$246) off the price of some of its new TVs — in return for aging models.

“The campaign itself offers customers the advantages of swapping old for new rather than simply throwing away — encouraging old televisions to be responsibly disposed of,” Sony UK spokesman Matt Coombe said.

NT dollar falls

The New Taiwan dollar lost ground against the US dollar on the Taipei Foreign Exchange yesterday, declining NT$0.046 to close at NT$33.010.

A total of US$925 million changed hands during trading.