Nan Shan Life Insurance Co (南山人壽) last month posted a net loss of NT$5 million (US$164,355) due to exchange-rate volatility, investment losses and a ban on any new investment-linked policies.
The loss ranked Nan Shan, which last year was the most profitable life insurer in Taiwan, as second-worst for earnings among domestic insurers last month, only better than Shin Kong Life Insurance Co (新光人壽), which posted a net loss of NT$253 million.
Exchange-rate volatility last month caused its hedging costs to rise as the New Taiwan dollar appreciated sharply against the US dollar, Nan Shan said in a statement.
The insurer said that last month, it disposed of some bonds and stocks that were not lucrative, which produced investment losses.
The insurer’s first-year premiums (FYP) last month plunged 59 percent from a year earlier to NT$6.92 billion, after the Financial Supervisory Commission banned it from selling new investment-linked policies from the middle of September due to its failure to resolve problems with its new information technology system.
The policies used to account for about 45 percent of all first-year premiums, data released by Nan Shan and the commission showed.
The insurer’s cumulative first-year premiums fell 8 percent annually to NT$150.56 billion for the first 10 months of the year, Nan Shan data showed.
The insurer’s inability to sell investment-linked policies has put a serious dent in its business, Nan Shan labor union president Yan Ching-lung (嚴慶龍) told the Taipei Times yesterday.
Nan Shan’s pool of foreign currencies shrank without the premiums generated from investment-linked policies — which are mostly denominated in US dollars — and the insurer had fewer funds that could be used for overseas investments, Yan said.
Nan Shan could resume selling the policies after its system is fixed and it passes an inspection by an independent third party, the commission said.
Despite the net losses for last month, the insurer reported a cumulative net profit of NT$38.72 billion for the first 10 months, up 42 percent year-on-year.
That was followed by Cathay Life Insurance Co’s (國泰人壽) net profit of NT$32.63 billion over the same period, Fubon Life Insurance Co’s (富邦人壽) NT$27.43 billion, Shin Kong Life’s NT$13.28 billion, Taiwan Life Insurance Co’s (台灣人壽) NT$14.37 billion and China Life Insurance Co’s (中國人壽) NT$13.87 billion, data showed.
The Investment Commission yesterday approved a Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) application to invest an additional US$3.5 billion in its Arizona subsidiary to manufactured advanced chips. The world’s largest contract chipmaker’s board of directors last month approved the funding project after TSMC started moving manufacturing equipment into the fab in December last year in preparation for the production of 4-nanometer chips next year. TSMC said it has also commenced the second phase of facility construction in Arizona. The second fab is to produce semiconductors using 3-nanometer technology in 2026. Altogether, TSMC plans to spend US$40 billion on the Arizona fabs, doubling its
KEY SECTOR: Taiwan’s new chip legislation is insufficient, and a more strategic ‘chip act’ that covers the whole semiconductor ecosystem is needed, MediaTek’s chairman said MediaTek Inc (聯發科) chairman Rick Tsai (蔡明介) yesterday urged the government to formulate a state semiconductor strategy and comprehensive “chip act” that includes local chip designers and smaller-scale semiconductor companies, as they are facing intensifying competition from China. The government is playing an increasingly important role in safeguarding the local semiconductor industry’s competitiveness, given that the US, the EU and Japan are offering hefty subsidies and significant tax incentives to build semiconductor capacity domestically, as they have realized the strategic importance of semiconductors, Tsai said. To implement such a program, the government should take steps to finance a “chip act,” Tsai said
Microsoft Corp has threatened to cut off access to its Internet search data, which it licenses to rival search engines, if they do not stop using it as the basis for their own artificial intelligence (AI) chat products, people familiar with the dispute have said. The software maker licenses the data in its Bing search index — a map of the Internet that can be quickly scanned in real time — to other companies that offer Web search, such as Apollo Global Management Inc’s Yahoo and DuckDuckGo. Last month, Microsoft integrated a cousin of ChatGPT, OpenAI’s AI-powered chat technology, into Bing. Rivals
Three years after Luxembourg declared all public transport free in a bid to clear its roads of jams and cut pollution, the car is still king of the congested grand duchy. Traffic permitting, it is barely an hour’s drive from Weiswampach in the far north of Luxembourg near the German and Belgian borders to Dudelange in the south, next door to France. The wealthy country of just 650,000 people appeared the perfect place for a bold experiment — making public transport on trains, trams and buses free nationwide. However, Luxembourg, despite its lack of long-distance highways, has one of the highest rates