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Local bourse ends flat as late-session buying recoups losses

Local bourse ends flat as late-session buying recoups losses

Taipei, Feb. 5 (CNA) Shares in Taiwan closed little changed Thursday as buying in the late session helped the broader market recoup most of the earlier losses caused by a lackluster performance on Wall Street overnight, dealers said. Turnover remained low amid renewed concerns over debt problems in the eurozone after the European Central Bank (ECB) raised pressure against financially troubled Greece to reach a debt repayment deal with its creditors, they said. The stagnant trading session also showed that many retail investors were reluctant to jump into the market ahead of the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday to avoid uncertainty from abroad during the break, they added. The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange ended down 1.87 points, or 0.01 percent, at 9,512.05, after moving between 9,472.42 and 9,517.42 on turnover of NT$72.98 billion (US$2.32 billion). The market opened up 2.28 points and rose to the day's high on follow-through buying from a session earlier, but when the index briefly breached 9,500 points, selling set in to push down the broader market to the red, dealers said. In the last trading session, bargain hunters turned active to pick up select blue chips, such as smartphone camera lens supplier Largan Precision Co. (???) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, ???), to narrow the downturn at the close, they said. "Investors have been watching closely how the debt situation in the eurozone will evolve, so the ECB's move to raise pressure on Greece has made many investors wary of future developments in financial conditions on the continent," Concord Securities analyst Kerry Huang said. The ECB's move prompted the Dow Jones Industrial Average to give up most of its earlier gains to close little changed overnight. "More importantly, local retail investors here appeared unwilling to raise their holdings for the moment amid fears that negative leads will emerge overseas during the Lunar New Year holiday. They tended to be cautious now," Huang said. The local bourse will be closed between Feb. 16 and Feb. 23. Despite a cautious mood held by local retail investors, foreign institutional investors remained on the buy side Thursday, registering a net buy of NT$2.09 billion worth of local shares on the main board. "I guess foreign buying focused on blue chips, helping them either to close in positive territory or to recover most of their earlier losses," Huang said. TSMC, the most heavily weighted stock in the local market, fell 0.34 percent to close at NT$145.50, off an early low of NT$143.50, with 23.38 million shares changing hands, while Largan, the most expensive stock, rose 1.10 percent to end at NT$2,760.00, recovering from a low of NT$2,720.00. Select financial stocks also benefited from late session buying. Among them, Fubon Financial Holding Co. (???) gained 0.39 percent to close at NT$51.70, and Cathay Financial Holding Co. (???) added 0.22 percent to end at NT$46.50. TransAsia Airways (????) extended losses from a session earlier after its Flight GE235 en route to Kinmen crashed in Taipei Wednesday morning shortly after taking off. The stock recouped part of its earlier losses, falling 3.29 percent to close at NT$11.75, on bargain hunting. "Before the Lunar New Year, the local bourse could continue to move in consolidation mode on thin trading volume, so it is not likely for the index to challenge the recent high of 9,593 points seen in July 2014," Huang said. (By Frances Huang)


Updated : 2021-09-29 10:36 GMT+08:00