[ BUSINESS BRIEFS ]

Staff writer, with agencies

Thu, Jan 24, 2013 - Page 14

Investors wait on Apple results

The TAIEX retreated yesterday in thin trading as many investors took to the sidelines as they waited for Apple Inc’s quarterly results to be released later that day, dealers said.

Old economy stocks also failed to stage a technical rebound from their recent slump, keeping the broader market in negative territory, they said.

The weighted index closed down 14.92 points, or 0.19 percent, at 7,744.18, on turnover of NT$62.68 billion (US$2.16 billion).

Steel stocks receive boost

Local steel stocks got a boost yesterday after China’s Baoshan Iron & Steel Co (寶鋼) raised product prices for the second time in a month, paving the way for Taiwanese steel makers to follow suit, strengthening their bottom lines, dealers said.

On Tuesday, Baoshan announced it would increase prices for contracts in March by between 100 yuan (US$16.08) and 220 yuan per tonne, or 3.92 percent on average.

Among the companies whose stock posted gains was China Steel Corp (中鋼), its shares climbing 0.74 percent to close at NT$27.20 (US$0.94), Yieh Hsing Enterprises Co (燁興), which gained 7 percent to NT$7.60 and Chien Shing Stainless Steel Co (千興) which also finished up 7 percent at NT$4.74.

Job market reform needed: Yiin

Taiwan’s unemployment is mainly the result of a structural problem where factories cannot recruit enough basic-level workers and university graduates are unable to find jobs fitting their education, Council for Economic Planning and Development Minister Yiin Chii-ming (尹啟銘) said on Tuesday.

Yiin made the remarks after the latest government data showed that the unemployment rate had dropped to 4.18 percent last month and finished at 4.24 percent for the whole of last year.

Fixing this structural problem requires reform of the relevant systems, including strengthening links between vocational education and industry, so that students find jobs when they graduate, he added.

Wi-Fi group to open new branch

The Wi-Fi Alliance, a global non-profit industry association, will open a branch office in Taipei today to provide market and technical support to alliance member companies.

Wi-Fi Alliance president and CEO, Edgar Figueroa, is to present the alliance’s plans for cooperation with its local partners and the development of Wi-Fi technology, an invitation e-mailed to the media said.

Taiwanese companies in the alliance include computer makers Acer Inc (宏碁) and Asustek Computer Inc (華碩), contract laptop maker Quanta Computer Inc (廣達), networking equipment maker ZyXEL Communications Corp (合勤科技) and chip designer MediaTek Inc (聯發科).

Bond auction successful

The yield of the government’s 20-year Treasury bonds reached 1.605 percent in an auction yesterday, higher than the 1.58 percent recorded in the previous sale of 20-year bonds in November last year, which had been the lowest on record, the central bank said in a statement.

Yesterday’s sale attracted bids for 1.42 times more than the NT$40 billion bonds on offer, less than the 1.73 times recorded last year, the statement said.

The banking sector was the biggest buyer of the bonds, purchasing 44.75 percent of the issuance.

NT dollar edges higher

The New Taiwan dollar closed higher against the US dollar yesterday, rising NT$0.003 to NT$29.092.

Turnover totaled US$662 million during the trading session.