Zhen Ding, TPK slump on small-cap company report

By Weiyi Lim and Debra Mao  /  Bloomberg

Tue, Nov 20, 2012 - Page 13

Zhen Ding Technology Holding Ltd (臻鼎) led an index of smaller stocks to a two-week low in Taipei trading after the Economic Daily News said Taiwan’s government funds asked asset managers to stop investing in these companies.

Shares in Zhen Ding, a printed circuit board producer that is a unit of the Foxconn Technology Group (富士康科技集團), yesterday closed down 6.49 percent to NT$72, their lowest closing price since Feb. 1. TPK Holding Co (TPK, 宸鴻) closed down 2.28 percent to NT$406.5, the lowest since Nov. 7.

The TAIEX closed down 0.01 percent.

Asset managers investing on behalf of government funds have been asked not to buy shares of small-cap stocks and those registered in the Cayman Islands, the Economic Daily News reported, citing executives from wealth management companies it did not identify. The policy stemmed from insider trading cases, according to the newspaper. Executive Yuan spokeswoman Cheng Li-wen (鄭麗文) was not immediately available to comment on the report.

“Investors will have less confidence to hold these stocks as a significant number of them aren’t allowed to buy,” Parker Wu (吳年恭), a fund manager at the Agriculture Bank of Taiwan (農業金庫), which oversees the equivalent of US$98 million, said in a telephone interview in Taipei yesterday. “In the long run, trading volumes for such shares will drop.”

ING Groep NV agreed to pay US$8.8 million to the government’s labor and pension funds to compensate for investment losses allegedly related to irregular trading activities, according to a statement by ING on Nov. 6.

The Council of Labor Affairs said on Oct. 31 that ING would be banned from investing on behalf of the government for five years. Taiwan’s labor and pension funds have NT$1.97 trillion (US$67 billion) in assets.