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September 20, 2017

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Local shares down following Wall Street retreat

TAIPEI--Shares in Taiwan closed 0.32 percent lower on Tuesday, falling below the 9,200 benchmark following a pullback by U.S. stocks overnight.

The market opened mostly lower after Wall Street suffered its worst performance in nearly a month, but a strong showing by large-cap stocks helped the broader market return to positive territory at one point before once again losing ground later in the day, dealers said.

The Taiwan Stock Exchange's main index closed down 29.86 points, or 0.32 percent, at 9,192.38 on Tuesday, before moving between 9,249.06 and 9,192.38 on turnover of NT$74.74 billion (US$2.35 billion).

The market opened down 1.29 points at 9,220.95 and moved in a small range until 1 p.m., but selling pressure mounted later in the session with Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) Taiwan Index scheduled to calculate its monthly returns on Tuesday, dealers said.

Shares in TransAsia Airways (復興航空), a Taiwan-based mid-sized international carrier, which abruptly announced its closure on Nov. 22, closed 9.94 percent higher at NT$3.76 on Tuesday following an announcement by a former Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA, 民航局) head that a business group has expressed interest in taking over the financially strapped carrier.

Investor sentiment is also expected to be dampened by Morgan Stanley Capital International's recent announcement that it has lowered Taiwan's weighting in two of its key indexes, with the index adjustments coming into effect after the stock market closes on Wednesday, dealers said.

In addition, the upcoming Italian referendum on a proposed constitutional amendment scheduled for Dec. 4 and a possible U.S. interest rate hike in December could also affect international capital flows into and out of the country, which could impact the local equity market, dealers said.

Foreign investors bought a net NT$1.32 billion worth of local shares on the local main board on Tuesday.

US Dollar Closes Higher on Taipei Forex

The U.S. dollar rose against the New Taiwan dollar Tuesday, gaining NT$0.016 to close at NT$31.818.

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