RTTNews - The Taiwan stock market on Monday halted the brutal five-day losing streak that had cost it more than 400 points or 5.87 percent in sending it to a five-week closing low. The Taiwan Stock Exchange surged back above the 6,800-point plateau, although analysts warn that the market my ease back below that level when it opens for business on Tuesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets provides little in the way of guidance as weakness among the financials and retail stocks is expected to be offset by gains among the oil and steel shares. The European markets finished on a positive note, while the U.S. markets ended little changed - and the Asian markets also are likely to trade in mixed fashion but may fall prey to profit taking following strong rallies on Monday.

The TSE finished sharply higher on Monday, fueled by gains among the technology issues, while the financials, textiles and cement stocks also ended higher.

For the day, the index jumped 183.45 points or 2.76 percent to finish at 6,838.25 after trading between 6,762.68 and 6,859.79 on turnover of 90.10 billion Taiwan dollars. There were 1,752 gainers and 684 decliners, with 128 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the gainers, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co added 2.82 percent, while United Microelectronics Corp surged 6.69 percent and HTC gained 1.81 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is virtually flat with perhaps a touch of downside as stocks moved back to the downside over the course of the trading session on Monday, ending the day nearly unchanged after seeing some early strength. The major averages closed on opposite sides of the unchanged mark.

This morning, traders reacted to comments from a number of central bankers over the weekend at the Federal Reserve conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, indicating that interest rates are likely to remain fixed for some time despite some signs of economic stabilization. At the conference, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said, Economic activity appears to be leveling out, both in the United States and abroad. Bernanke also noted that the prospects for a return to growth in the near term appear good.

However, the optimism was partly offset by comments from economist Nouriel Roubini, who said that he sees a big risk of a double recession in an article for the Financial Times. Roubini, who predicted the magnitude of the recent financial crisis, stated that the global economy might bottom out in the second half of the year and that the economies in the U.S and other European countries might witness anemic or below trend growth for at least a couple of years.

The pullback by the markets was also partly due to comments from Sun Trust (SIT) CEO James Wells, who said that financial institutions are likely to incur further losses amid the dismal condition of the commercial real estate market.

In other news, conflicting reports have led to speculation over the health of Bernard Madoff, perpetrator of the largest Ponzi scheme in history, who may be dying of cancer at a federal prison in North Carolina. However, prison officials have refuted the cancer claim that a number of media outlets reported earlier.

The major averages saw choppy movement in late session dealing, resulting in a mixed close to kick off the week. While the Dow closed up by 3.32 points or less than a tenth of a percent at 9,509.28, the NASDAQ slipped by 2.92 points or 0.1 percent to 2,017.98 and the S&P 500 fell by 0.56 or 0.1 percent to 1,025.57.

In economic news, Taiwan will on Tuesday provide M2 money supply figures for July, with forecasts calling for a 9.4 percent expansion on year after the 8.15 percent gain in June.

Also, commercial sales fell 3.09 percent on an annual basis in July, slower than a 5.32 percent fall in the preceding month. Including wholesale trade, commercial sales fell 4.64 percent and were down 1.03 percent after food services were added. However, sales increased 1.28 percent after retail trade was included.

In addition, Taiwan's jobless rate stood at a seasonally adjusted 6.01 percent in July, up from 5.91 percent in June, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics said Monday. Economists expected the rate to be 5.95 percent. The number of unemployed increased 10,000 persons to 655,000 in July. At the same time, the employed population decreased slightly to 10.24 million from 10.25 million in the preceding month. Further, the participation rate declined to 57.8 percent from 57.87 percent in June. Meanwhile, the labor force remained unchanged with 10.9 million persons.

Finally, Taiwan export orders dropped 8.77 percent year-on-year in July, compared with a 10.91 percent fall in the previous month. Economists were looking for a decline of 9.67 percent. On a monthly basis, export orders increased 2.42 percent in July, slower than the 11.02 percent growth in the preceding month. For the January to July period, export orders dipped 21.15 percent compared to the same period of the previous year.

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