Losses May Accelerate For Taiwan Stock Market

(RTTNews) - Ahead of Wednesday's holiday for Peace Memorial Day, the Taiwan stock market had ended the three-day winning streak in which it had rallied more than 270 points or 1.4 percent. The Taiwan Stock Exchange now sits just above the 18,850-point plateau and it's likely to open under pressure on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is one of caution ahead of key U.S. inflation data later today. The European markets were mixed and the U.S. bourses were down and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.

The TSE finished modestly lower on Tuesday following losses from the cement companies and mixed performances from the financial shares and technology stocks.

For the day, the index sank 93.64 points or 0.49 percent to finish at 18,854.41 after trading between 18,752.53 and 19,023.01.

Among the actives, Mega Financial perked 0.13 percent, while CTBC Financial fell 0.34 percent, E Sun Financial soared 3.08 percent, United Microelectronics Corporation rose 0.31 percent, Largan Precision added 0.57 percent, Delta Electronics tumbled 2.03 percent, Novatek Microelectronics surged 3.60 percent, Formosa Plastics lost 0.42 percent, Nan Ya Plastics retreated 1.67 percent, Asia Cement slid 0.37 percent, Taiwan Cement dropped 0.93 percent, China Steel skidded 1.00 percent and Cathay Financial, First Financial, Fubon Financial, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Hon Hai Precision, Catcher Technology and MediaTek were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is weak as the major averages opened sharply lower on Wednesday, pared their losses as the day progressed but still ended in the red.

The Dow shed 23.39 points or 0.06 percent to finish at 38,949.02, while the NASDAQ dropped 87.56 points or 0.55 percent and the S&P 500 sank 8.42 points or 0.17 percent to end at 5,069.76.

The early weakness on Wall Street came as traders looked to cash in on the recent strength in the markets ahead of the release of closely watched readings on consumer price inflation later today.

With Federal Reserve officials saying they need greater confidence inflation is slowing before they consider cutting interest rates, the data could have a significant impact on the outlook for rates.

In economic news, the Commerce Department said the jump by real gross domestic product in the fourth quarter was downwardly revised to 3.2 percent from the previously reported 3.3 percent.

Oil prices fell on Wednesday after data showed a much larger than expected increase in U.S. crude inventories last week. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for April ended down $0.33 or 0.42 percent at $78.54 a barrel.

Closer to home, Taiwan will provide Q4 data for gross domestic product and January numbers for industrial production and unemployment later today. GDP is expected to rise 5.12 percent on year, up from 2.32 percent in the previous three months. In December, industrial output fell 3.99 percent on year and the jobless rate was 3.4 percent.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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