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Share plunge cuts market cap by 1.96% in 1 week

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A plunge in share prices in Taiwan has dragged down market capitalization of the local main board by 1.96 percent in one week, according to statistics released by the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

In the past five trading sessions, the weighted index on the TWSE fell 180.55 points or 1.95 percent from the end of last week to close at 9,085.96 points Friday, the lowest level since May 30, when the index stood at 9,075.91 points.

The heavy losses of the local bourse in the week came largely due to lingering concerns over the impact from a series of deadly chemical explosions in Kaohsiung City, which killed at least 30 people and injured more than 300, analysts said.

Market sentiment was also dampened by worries over geopolitical tensions related to Ukraine and the Middle East, they added.

As of Friday, the main board's market capitalization stood at about NT$26 trillion (US$867 billion), down NT$520.56 billion from a week earlier, the statistics showed.

The FTSE TWSE Taiwan 50 Index, which is comprised of the 50 largest cap stocks on the main board, fell 0.92 percent during one week, while the Formosa Stock Index, which can measure the aggregate performance of the main board and the local over-the-counter market, lost 2.15 percent.

During the week, the auto sub-index fell 6.55 percent, the steepest decline among the approximately 30 sub-indexes on the main board, while the electronics sub-index rose 0.17 percent, the highest gains among these sub-indexes, the TWSE said.

The weighted index excluding the financial sector fell 1.95 percent in the week, while the weighted index excluding the electronics sector shed 2.88 percent, and the weighted index excluding the financial and electronics sectors dropped 3.26 percent, the exchange said.

The total stock turnover of the main board for the week reached NT$455.25 billion, according to the statistics. Trading volume of the semiconductor sector reached NT$107.79 billion, accounting for 23.68 percent of the total, ahead of turnover posted by the optoelectronics sector which hit 58.44 billion, making up 12.84 percent of the total, the TWSE said.

Since the beginning of this year, the total turnover of the local bourse has hit NT$14.54 trillion, with the average daily turnover at NT$99.60 billion.

After the dive this week, analysts said that the weighted index has been moving closer to the nearest technical resistance of around 9,000 points, and it is possible that the local bourse will stage a technical rebound next week.

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