Shares move higher toward 9,300-point mark

Shares in Taiwan closed higher Wednesday as most Asian markets closed up, following strong earnings reports from a number of U.S. companies, which drove solid gains on Wall Street overnight, dealers said.

The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TAIEX) closed up 61.41 points, or 0.67 percent, at 9,283.99, after moving between 9,226.46 and 9,298.87, on turnover of NT$72.11 billion (US$2.29 billion).

The market opened up 5.40 points at 9,227.98, and climbed at one point to approach the 9,300 benchmark, less than 40 points shy of the year's high of 9,327, before closing at 9,283.99.

The surge was mainly prompted by rises in electronics heavyweights, while bargain hunting also spread to some old-economy stocks, dealers said. Among them, Formosa Plastics Corp. (??) gained 2.11 percent to close at NT$82.20, while Formosa Chemicals & Fibre Corp. (??) ended up 3.37 percent at NT$92.00 and Cheng Shin Rubber Ind. Co. (????) rose 3.12 percent to end at NT$66.1.

Among the high-tech stocks, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC,???), the most heavily weighted stock in the local market, rose 1.34 percent to end at NT$189.50, while TPK Holding Co. (??), a major supplier of touch panels for Apple Inc., surged 2.8 percent to finish at NT$95.50.

Given that foreign investors now hold about 40 percent of TAIEX shares, their movements will be the biggest factor affecting the local stock market, the dealers said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel