Taiwan shares end above 9,900 points
Shares in Taiwan closed above the 9,900-point mark Friday on expanded turnover as investors rushed to pick up large-cap electronics stocks following a rebound staged by the tech-heavy Nasdaq overnight, dealers said.
Buying focused on the semiconductor sector, and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, ), the most heavily weighted stock in the local market, steamed ahead to lift up the entire electronics sector throughout the session, they said.
The financial sector slowed down after a strong session a day earlier but still rose above its previous closing level amid optimism over its earnings prospects, dealers said.
The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange ended up 115.79 points, or 1.18 percent, at 9,913.28, after moving between 9,839.71 and 9,961.31, on turnover of NT$164.65 billion (US$5.31 billion).
The market opened up 0.44 percent as interest rotated to the bellwether electronics sector, led by TSMC.
Buying remained strong in early morning trading to push the index above 9,900 points, only for selling to set in, sending the index below the threshold before noon, dealers said.
Interest in high- tech shares picked up again in the afternoon, lifting trading volume and helping the index vault back above the 9,900-point mark at the end of the session, they said.
Friday’s turnover was the highest for a single session since Feb. 9, 2012 and continued the momentum of the previous day when turnover was NT$144.53 billion, the second highest daily total this year.
“Judging from the swelling turnover, I think that market sentiment has improved, prompting many investors to chase share prices and push the index higher today,” KGI Securities analyst Phil Chu said.
“After scrambling to pick up financial stocks yesterday, investors shifted their attention to large-cap stocks today. Such rotational buying in a market awash in liquidity served as the driver of the latest upturn,” Chu said.
The semiconductor subindex closed up 2.76 percent, and the electronics sub- index ended up 1.65 percent after TSMC gained 3.74 percent to close at NT$152.50, with 122.73 million shares changing hands.
TSMC’s share price had been in consolidation mode for some time due to its lower-than-expected sales forecast for the second quarter, Chu said.
“But after the second quarter, the chip giant is expected to make a comeback after inventory adjustments come to an end. Today’s buying simply reflected such optimism.”
Chu cautioned, however, that TSMC shares could encounter technical resistance as the stock moves closer to NT$155 in the near term.
Among other gaining high-tech stocks, integrated circuit designer MediaTek Inc. ( ) rose 3.97 percent to end at NT$419.00, and IC packaging and testing services provider Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc. (ASE) added 2.70 percent to close at NT$45.70.
Bucking the upturn on the broader market, smartphone camera lens maker Largan Precision Co. ( ), the most expensive stock in the local market, fell 0.95 percent to close at NT$3,115.00 after the stock hit a new high a day earlier.
Also, Hermes Microvision Inc. ( ), a semiconductor inspection tool and equipment supplier, fell 1.39 percent to close at NT$2,130.00. It remained the second most expensive stock in Taiwan.
In the financial sector, which ended up 0.36 percent after a 4.65 percent surge a day earlier, CTBC Financial Holding Co. ( ) rose 0.83 percent to close at NT$24.20, and Fubon Financial Holding Co. ( ) fell 0.81 percent to end at NT$61.20.
“Major financial holding companies are fundamentally healthy. I expect that the sector will continue to move higher by attracting institutional interest, further boosting the market,” Chu said.
A woman looks at a monitor in a stock brokerage in Taipei, yesterday. Shares in Taiwan closed above the 9,900-point mark yesterday.