Taiwan share prices closed 1.86 percent higher yesterday as the country's currency continued to strengthen and Wall Street rose overnight, dealers said.
Some investors believe a liquidity-driven upswing is likely to continue in the run-up to the March 22 presidential election, they said.
The weighted index closed up 154.41 points at the day's high of 8,462.08, off a low of 8,362.94, on turnover of NT$177.10 billion.
Risers led decliners 1,410 to 582, with 354 stocks unchanged. A total of 47 stocks closed limit-up and 17 were limit-down.
"A favorable mix of domestic and external conditions contributed to the local bourse extending its bull run since the Lunar New Year holiday," said Mega International Investment Services assistant vice president Hung Chen-yuan.
The Taipei bourse has gained 10.27 percent since it resumed trading on February 12 after the week-long holiday. However, volatility has increased in recent sessions, reflecting investor caution as the benchmark index approaches heavier resistance levels, Hung said.
Among the heavyweights, electronics and financials were up 2.22 percent and 0.81 percent, respectively. Paper was up 2.29 percent, plastics/petrochemicals rose 2.12 percent, cement was up 2.02 percent, food was up 1.81 percent and construction jumped 1.23 percent.
The steel sector slipped by 0.04 percent on concerns over higher costs of materials such as iron ore.
The market stands a good chance of testing 8,600 points on the weighted index, probably before election day, provided an anticipated wave of profit-taking in the near term does not become a major sell-off, Hung said.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. closed up NT$1.20 at NT$63.60 and United Microelectronics was NT$0.45 higher at NT$18.70.
Innolux was up NT$5.70 at NT$93.00 on the back of solid results for 2007, AU Optronics rose NT$0.10 to NT$61.30 and Chi Mei was NT$0.15 higher at NT$42.55.
Powerchip was up NT$0.35 at NT$12.85 after its chairman reportedly said sales would rise 10-15 percent this year.
Financial heavyweights were mixed on concerns that the firmer Taiwan dollar could hit the overseas earnings of their life insurance units. Cathay Financial was up NT$0.20 at NT$83.00 while Shin Kong Financial was down NT$0.10 at NT$23.45.
Innolux Display Corp. jumped to its highest in six weeks after posting a record profit for 2007. The company's stock gained NT$6.10, or the daily maximum 7 percent, to NT$93.40. Innolux, which assembles flat-screen computer monitors for other companies including Dell Inc., said after the market closed on Tuesday its profit rose to NT$16.15 billion, or NT$6.51 a share, in 2007, from NT$2.83 billion, or NT$1.27 a share, in 2006.