Staff writer, with agencies

Fri, Nov 09, 2012 - Page 14

US ‘fiscal cliff’ fears hit TAIEX

The TAIEX closed lower yesterday reflecting a dive on Wall Street overnight amid concerns in Washington over a potential looming “fiscal cliff,” dealers said.

However, bargain hunters turned active during the session, rushing to pick up selected high-priced high-tech stocks to help the broader market recoup part of its earlier losses by the end of the session, they said.

The weighted index closed down 44.55 points, or 0.61 percent, at the day’s high of 7,242.63, from an earlier low of 7,190.99, on turnover of NT$68.92 billion (US$2.37 billion).

Government to cut stock tax

The Ministry of Finance and the Financial Supervisory Commission have reached a consensus to cut the tax on stock transactions for warrant issuance purposes in a bid to boost turnover on the local bourse.

In a statement released on Wednesday, the ministry said following discussions between the two agencies, the government has decided to cut the stock transaction tax for the trading measure to 0.1 percent from the current 0.3 percent.

The two agencies will hold further discussions to finalize a timeframe for the tax cut as the change will involve revisions of certain regulations, the ministry said.

Medical instruments output up

The annual output value of Taiwan’s medical instrument industry is expected to rise despite the global economic downturn, according to the results of a survey released yesterday.

The survey by the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI, 工研院) shows that the output of the medical instrument industry is expected to exceed NT$76 billion this year, up 11.51 percent from a year earlier.

The institute adjusted its forecast upward by NT$3 billion from its previous estimate in May and mainly attributed the revision to rising sales of contact lenses, along with blood glucose monitors and test strips.

Taipei savors Australian coffee

Gloria Jean’s Coffees, the biggest coffee franchise in Australia, opened its first shop in Taiwan on Wednesday, entering a lucrative market that sees an estimated 300 million cups of coffee sold per year.

The Australian chain launched its first cafe on Taipei’s Minquan West Road.

The company plans to open another shop in Taipei early next year and three more within two years, according to Wu Chia-hsiang (吳佳祥), director of the company that operates Gloria Jean’s business in Taiwan.

Hon Hai brings in US engineers

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海) plans to bring in more engineers from the US through a partnership with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘) said on Wednesday at a business forum.

Hon Hai has been in talks with MIT recently to invite dozens of US engineers to its factories in Taiwan and China.

The company will offer them an environment in which to learn Chinese and make products with their own hands, Gou said.

The company will also provide the engineers with opportunities to start automated factories in the US, he added.

NT dollar declines against US

The New Taiwan dollar fell against the US dollar yesterday, declining NT$0.002 to close at NT$29.202 as the central bank intervened again to reverse the losses posted in early trading by the greenback, dealers said.

Turnover totaled US$613 million during the trading session.