The consumer confidence index this month sank to 64.5, the lowest in 12.5 years, as a persisting stock rout and COVID-19 infections have made consumers apprehensive, a survey by National Central University found yesterday.
The index fell 3.67 points from one month earlier to the same level as the global financial crisis in 2008-2009, with all six component measures taking a hit, said Dachrahn Wu (吳大任), director of the university’s Research Center for Taiwan Economic Development, which conducted the survey.
In particular, the sub-index on stock investment tumbled 7.4 points to a record low of 25.5, suggesting that a majority of investors prefer to stay on the sidelines, scared by wild corrections at home and abroad, Wu said.
Photo: Liao Chen-hui, Taipei Times
The sub-index on the nation’s economic outlook fell 4.9 points to 80.95, the softest since June 2020, as concerns over an economic turnaround continue to build up even though key economic bellwethers, such as exports and industrial output, hold firm, Wu said.
Confidence values of 100 and more suggest positive sentiment and scores lower than the threshold indicate pessimism.
Interest rates on 30-year mortgages approached 6 percent in the US, which could squeeze spending on non-essential items, Wu said, adding that the trend is unfavorable for Taiwanese manufacturers, because many supply electronic parts used in smartphones, laptops, TVs, vehicles and peripheral devices.
Taiwanese also expressed unease over rising inflationary pressures, depressing the confidence measure on consumer prices to 26.65, the lowest level since December 2008, the survey showed.
Consumer price hikes are most evident at restaurants and department stores, Wu said.
Interest in consumption of durable goods shed 2.9 points to a record low of 111.9, while interest in real-estate properties dropped by 5.55 points to 105.55, the lowest since the launch of the index, the university said.
Taiwan’s interest rate hikes, although relatively moderate, would still make buyers cautious about financial planning to avoid cash strain, Wu said.
The central bank has raised interest rates by 1.5 percent in two adjustments this year and is expected to tighten further if consumer prices fail to ease.
The university said it polled 2,792 adults between June 18 and Tuesday last week by telephone.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in July made its consumer health products division a separate entity as it transforms into a world-leading biopharmaceutical company. By uniting science, technology and talent, the company is aiming to prevent and treat diseases with innovative vaccines, specialty pharmaceuticals and general medicines. GSK’s headquarters annually invests NT$192 billion (US$6.07 billion) in research and development, focusing on immune science and advanced technologies in human genetics. GSK’s drug and vaccine development focuses on infectious diseases, HIV, oncology and immunology. Investing in clinical trial research each year, GSK also brings drug development to Taiwan. It cooperates with 17 medical institutes and research
SLUMPING DEMAND: Inventory has climbed by up to 12 weeks as suppliers are under mounting pressure to offload excessive reserves, a TrendForce report said The price of DRAM chips is expected to fall at a steeper rate of 13 to 18 percent next quarter, as high inflation continues to weigh on demand for consumer electronics, causing chip inventories to soar, market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技) said yesterday. The downtrend in DRAM prices could extend from a quarterly decline of 10 to 15 percent in the third quarter, the Taipei-based researcher said. “Demand for consumer electronics continued to stagnate during the third quarter, which used to be a high demand season,” TrendForce said in a statement. “During the quarter, memorychip consumption and shipments both showed quarterly
INEXPENSIVE POWER: Group chairman Gautam Adani said 70% of the investment would go into energy transition, with a focus on green hydrogen India’s Adani Group is to invest more than US$100 billion over the next decade, most of it in the energy transition business, chairman Gautam Adani said yesterday, as the ports-to-energy conglomerate accelerates an already aggressive expansion plan. After founding the group in 1988 as a commodities trading business, the 60-year-old has ventured into multiple sectors, mainly in the infrastructure space and in line with the priorities of the government of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “As a group, we will invest over US$100 billion of capital in the next decade,” Adani, the world’s second-richest person, told the Forbes Global CEO Conference in
Foxconn Technology Group (富士康科技集團) is to invest US$1.75 million in a joint venture with PT Indika Energy Tbk to explore commercial electric vehicle (EV) and electric battery business opportunities in Indonesia, the Taipei-based company said yesterday. With the investment, Foxconn would hold a 40 percent stake in the joint venture, PT Foxconn Indika Motor, while PT Indika would own 60 percent. The collaboration is an extension of a memorandum of understanding signed in January by Indika Energy, Foxconn, Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) and others aiming to build an electric vehicle supply chain in Southeast Asia’s biggest economy. Gogoro, in which Foxconn owns a 0.76