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Local market ends highest since Ma's inauguration

TAIPEI--Shares in Taiwan closed higher Tuesday with the index surging to the highest level since May 19, 2008, the day before President Ma Ying-jeou assumed office.

The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange closed up 59.63 points, or 0.65 percent at 9,222.37 points, breaking the highest previous level of 9,220.69 points, achieved in February 2011.

The market fluctuated between 9,222.37 and 9,171.75 before close of trade, with turnover reaching NT$102.94 billion (US$3.43 billion).

Trading on electronics and financial stocks was robust. Electronics shares rose 0.74 percent, prompted by growth in shares of major high tech companies, including Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (台積電), ASE Group (日月光) and Largan Precision Co (大立光).

Boosted by investment by COTA Commercial Bank (三信商銀), King's Town Bank (金城銀行) stocks grew NT$0.5, or 1.74 percent. Fubon Financial Holdings (富邦金) and Cathay Financial Holdings (國泰金) shares also enjoyed growth of 1.7 percent and 1.52 percent, respectively.

The strong performance triggered an overall rise of 0.92 percent in the financial sector.

Trading on stocks of traditional industries was mixed, affected by a corruption scandal related to an affordable housing project in Taoyuan County. Because of this, shares in the construction sector fell 0.94 percent during Tuesday.

US Dollar Closes Slightly Higher on Taipei Forex

The U.S. dollar rose marginally against the New Taiwan dollar Tuesday, gaining NT$0.002 to close at NT$30.050.

Turnover totaled US$630 million during the trading session.

The greenback opened at NT$30.050, and moved to a low of NT$29.983 before rebounding.

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This photo shows the entrance of the Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation in Taipei, yesterday. Shares in Taiwan closed higher yesterday with the index surging to the highest level since May 19, 2008, the day before President Ma Ying-jeou assumed office.

(CNA)

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