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Local market finishes lower on profit taking, ending down 0.26% at 8,392.55

TAIPEI--Shares in Taiwan closed down at under 8,400 points Tuesday as investors locked in the gains they had built in the past few sessions, taking cues from a pullback on Wall Street overnight, dealers said.

Selling focused on large-cap stocks in both high-tech and old economy sectors amid renewed concerns over an exit by the U.S. Federal Reserve from its massive bond-buying program in the wake of an improvement in U.S. manufacturing activity, they said.

The weighted index ended down 22.06 points, or 0.26 percent, at 8,392.55, after moving between 8,390.73 and 8,418.23 on turnover of NT$69.53 billion (US$2.35 billion).

Among the falling high-tech stocks, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (台積電), the most heavily weighted index in the local market, fell 0.48 percent to close at NT$104.00, and Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海精密), the world's largest contract electronics maker, lost 0.13 percent to end at NT$78.10.

In the non-high tech sector, Formosa Plastics Corp. (台塑) fell 0.77 percent to close at NT$77.40, and textile maker Far Eastern New Century Corp. (遠東新世紀) shed 1.61 percent to end at NT$33.65, while Cathay Financial Holding Co. (國泰金控) closed down 0.76 at NT$46.00.

The U.S. dollar rose against the Taiwan dollar Tuesday, gaining NT$0.066 to close at the day's high of NT$29.702 as the greenback returned to positive territory as a result of intervention by the local central bank, dealers said.

It was the first time the U.S. dollar had risen above the NT$29.70 mark since Sept. 18, when the currency finished at NT$29.752.

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