RTTNews - The Taiwan stock market on Monday wrote a finish to the modest two-day losing streak that had cost it just a dozen points or 0.2 percent along the way. The Taiwan Stock Exchange closed above the 7,000-point plateau for the first time in 11 months, and now investors are looking for the market to track further to the upside when it opens on Tuesday.
The global forecast for the Asian bourses again provides little in the way of guidance, with financial and property stocks expected to post mild gains and nudge the markets into positive territory. Some better than expected economic news out of the United States could add to sentiment, although it also may wan on mixed corporate results. The European markets were modestly higher and the U.S. bourses tipped slightly higher, and the Asian markets are predicted also to move slightly higher.
The TSE finished modestly higher on Monday, thanks to solid gains among the chemical and plastic sectors. Cement stocks also finished higher, as did the technology, textile and food shares. Selling among the construction and the paper sectors cut into the overall gains.
For the day, the index added 55.15 points or 0.79 percent to close at 7,028.43 after trading between 6,954.30 and 7,059.46. Volume was 4.14 billion shares worth 112.35 billion Taiwan dollars. There were 1,206 gainers and 1,061 decliners, with 181 stocks finishing unchanged.
Among the gainers, Powerchip Semiconductor and ProMOS both were up by the 7 percent daily limit, while United Microelectronics Corp surged 6.18 percent and TSMC added 0.7 percent.
The lead from Wall Street is flat with perhaps a touch of upside as stocks staged a modest rally in late session trading after experiencing a largely lackluster session on Monday. The major averages were all able to finish in positive territory by mild margins on another day marred by low volume.
On the economic front, the Commerce Department released a report showing that new home sales in the month of June increased by much more than expected. New home sales jumped by 11 percent, the sharpest increase in nearly nine years.
The Commerce Department showed that new home sales rose to an annual rate of 384,000 in June from the revised May rate of 346,000. Economists had expected sales to rise to 352,000 from the 342,000 originally reported for the previous month.
The stronger than expected sales growth came amid a pullback in prices, with the median sales price of new houses sold in June falling 5.8 percent to $206,200 from $219,000 in the previous month. The median sales price had increased for two consecutive months.
In earnings news, RadioShack (RSH), Tellabs (TLAB) and Corning (GLW) reported earnings that beat Wall Street estimates, while Verizon (VZ) and Honeywell (HON) reported results that were in-line with expectations. Aetna (AET), however, was one of the major firms whose quarterly earnings fell short of estimates.
The major averages showed a notable move to the upside going into the close, ending the session just above the unchanged line. The Dow closed up by 15.27 points or 0.2 percent at 9,108.51, the NASDAQ climbed by 1.93 points or 0.1 percent to 1,967.89 and the S&P 500 rose by 2.92 points or 0.3 percent at 982.18.
In economic news, Taiwan's leading indicator rose 1.8 percent month-on-month in June to 97.9, the Cabinet's Council for Economic Planning and Development said on Monday. This comes after a 2.6 percent rise in May. The leading index's annualized six-month rate of change increased by 4.8 points to 8.3 percent. At the same time, the coincident index climbed 1.1 percent in June to 89.6, slower than a 1.9 percent rise in the preceding month. Its trend adjusted index rose by 1.1 percent to 88.7.
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