Staff writer, with CNA

Fri, Jan 25, 2013 - Page 14

TAIEX falls on Apple’s outlook

The TAIEX yesterday closed down 0.62 percent, or 48.19 points, to 7,695.99 as Apple Inc’s local component suppliers came under pressure after the US technology giant gave a cautious sales outlook for the current quarter, dealers said.

Turnover amounted to NT$73.19 billion (US$2.52 billion).

“Apple’s results dictated the market movement throughout the session, as many investors feared that weakening sales and profitability will impact Taiwanese suppliers’ bottom lines,” President Securities (統一證券) analyst Vickie Hsieh (謝雯霞) said.

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), which assembles iPhones and iPads for Apple, suffered the brunt, with its share price plunging 2.94 percent to NT$82.50.

Formosa bonus hits record low

The Formosa Plastics Group (FPG, 台塑集團) yesterday said it planned to give out 2.83 months of salary as bonuses for its employees. The figure is a record low.

Formosa said last year was a tough period for the group, with net profits falling to their lowest level in 10 years as ethylene prices almost halved from 2011. The group made NT$16.2 billion in net income last year.

The group expects this year to be a slightly better period than last year, bolstered by an improving world economy.

HTC launches Desire U

Smartphone vendor HTC Corp (宏達電) yesterday launched a new smartphone named Desire U, a medium-range model of its popular Butterfly phone.

The mid-end smartphone runs on Google Inc’s Android operating system and is equipped with a 4-inch high-definition touch-screen display.

To promote sales ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, HTC said Desire U model would sell for NT$7,990. The phone is also available for NT$3,990 with a bundled service package from Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), the nation’s biggest phone company. The package carries a minimum monthly fee of NT$291.

Wi-Fi Alliance opens branch

Wi-Fi Alliance, the global collaboration forum for Wi-Fi wireless technology, yesterday formally opened a branch office in Taiwan to provide certification and engineering support to its member companies throughout Asia.

The staff of the Taipei branch office will assist member companies with technical and certification policy information, and help them prepare products for certification testing at a Wi-Fi Alliance-authorized test laboratory.

“Taiwan has been a critical part of our industry since its inception and remains a key part of the industry’s future,” Wi-Fi Alliance president and CEO Edgar Figueroa said.

Minister upbeat on TIFA talks

Minister of Economic Affairs Shih Yen-hsiang (施顏祥) yesterday said that Taiwan and the US are in close discussions over a resumption of talks under the bilateral Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA).

Shih told reporters that a formal announcement on the decision to resume TIFA talks would be made once the discussions have been completed.

Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) said upon his return from the US at the head of a Taiwanese delegation that attended US President Barack Obama’s inauguration that the “highly expected talks under the bilateral agreement should resume soon.”

NT dollar falls on intervention

The New Taiwan dollar yesterday fell by NT$0.046 to close at NT$29.138 against the US dollar as the central bank intervened to keep the local currency from overshooting, dealers said. Turnover was US$862 million.