Shares fall to 9,259.48 amid Greece worry
Shares in Taiwan moved lower Monday as investors took cues from the losses on Wall Street last Friday, which were caused by renewed concerns over the debt problems in Greece, dealers said.
Turnover on the local market fell below the NT$80 billion (US$2.58 billion) mark as many investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of a U.S. Federal Reserve policymaking meeting that is expected to look at interest rates when it begins Tuesday, dealers said.
HTC Staged Technical Rebound
While the broader market here remained slow, smartphone vendor HTC Corp. ( ) staged a strong technical rebound on market hopes of an acquisition by personal computer brand Asustek Computer Inc. ( ), dealers said.
The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange ended down 42.45 points, or 0.45 percent, at 9,259.48, after moving between 9,252.34 and 9,324.94. Turnover totaled NT$74.57 billion during the session.
The market opened 0.04 points lower and fell further on follow-through selling from the previous session, before bargain hunting emerged and helped push the index back into positive territory at one point, dealers said.
However, after the index briefly breached 9,300 points, investors shifted to the sell side again, with large cap stocks coming under pressure on fears of volatility in the global financial markets due to the unresolved debt situation in Greece, dealers said.
Regional Markets Fell
“Look at other regional markets like Hong Kong and Shanghai, which also fell today. I think market sentiment in the region has been undermined by the debt problem in Greece,” Hua Nan Securities analyst Kevin Su said. “Taiwan was no exception.”
Last Thursday, the International Monetary Fund recalled its negotiators on the Greece debt rescue program, giving rise to fears that the European country would default on its massive debts.
“The global markets have also been haunted by a possible interest rate hike by the U.S Fed,” Su said. “Many investors preferred to stay away from the trading floor until after the Fed meeting,” Su said, referring to the thin trading volume on Monday.
Since foreign institutional investors have a large number of net short-position contracts in the futures market, large cap stocks were the major victims of Monday’s downturn in the spot market, Su said.
Among the electronics heavyweights, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. ( ) fell 1.04 percent to close at NT$143.00, and integrated circuit designer MediaTek Inc. ( ) lost 1.68 percent to end at NT$409.00.
In the non-high tech sector, Nan Ya Plastics Corp. ( ) lost 0.84 percent to close at NT$71.10, Formosa Chemicals & Fibre Corp. ( ) fell 1.50 to end at NT$72.30, and Mega Financial Holding Co. ( ) closed down 0.72 percent at NT$27.60.
Bucking the broader market trend, HTC rose by the maximum daily 10 percent to finish at NT$83.60 after Asustek raised the possibility of acquiring the smartphone vendor.
“But I think the HTC gains were just technical in nature after the recent selloff,” Su said. “I’m still worried about the company’s earnings outlook.”
HTC has projected a loss per share of almost NT$10 for the April to May period.