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Taiwan shares close above 8,500 points

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Shares in Taiwan on Friday hit a 28-month high and closed above 8,500 points as foreign institutional investors took cues from the gains on Wall Street overnight, according to dealers.

Data from the Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation (TWSE) showed that Taiwan's Capitalization Weighted Stock Index (TAIEX) closed up 49.15 points, or 0.57 percent, at 8,535.04, after moving between 8,488.44 and 8,543.50, on turnover of NT$74.99 billion.

“After today's gains, the local market has become technically healthier. I expect the index will continue to steam ahead when foreign investors return after the New Year holiday,” Hua Nan Securities analyst Henry Miao told Central News Agency (CNA).

CNA reported that buying rotated to the bellwether electronics sector, led by some semiconductor stocks such as integrated circuit design house MediaTek Inc.(聯發科), which helped the index clear the technical resistance ahead of 8,500 points, dealers said.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (台積電), the most heavily weighted stock in the local market, gained 0.48 percent to end at NT$104.50, while Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海精密), which assembles iPhone and iPad for Apple Inc., added 0.76 percent to close at NT$79.90.

However, the property sector underperformed the broader market in the wake of media reports that home prices in Taipei had dropped in September, breaking a six-month gaining streak, dealers said.

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