The Taiwan stock market has closed higher now in seven straight sessions, surging more than 425 points or 5.8 percent in that span. The Taiwan Stock Exchange ended just above the 7,760-point plateau, and now investors are expected to lock in gains when the market opens on Tuesday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is slightly soft, with investors expected to lock in gains after rallying in recent sessions. Adding to the cautious sentiment are weak economic data from the U.S. and concerns of an escalation of hostilities between China and Japan over a group of disputed islands. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asian bourses are tipped to open in similar fashion.
The TSE finished modestly higher on Monday following gains from the textile, finance, paper, plastic, cement and construction sectors. Food stocks were weak, while technology shares were largely unchanged.
For the day, the index collected 24.17 points or 0.31 percent to finish at 7,762.22 after trading between 7,725.90 and 7,778.06 on turnover of 114.6 billion Taiwan dollars. There were 2,411 gainers and 2,235 decliners, with 385 stocks finishing unchanged.
Among the gainers, Cathay Financial Holding climbed 3.73 percent, while Chinatrust Financial Holding jumped 2.15 percent and Shin Kong Financial Holding spiked 3.44 percent.
The lead from Wall Street suggests mild consolidation as stocks moved mostly lower on Monday, with traders cashing in on last week's Federal Reserve-inspired rally. Selling pressure remained relatively subdued, however, limiting the downside for the markets.
Profit taking contributed to the weakness, which came after recent gains lifted the major averages to multi-year highs. The Dow and the S&P 500 both ended Friday's trading at their best closing levels in over four years, while the tech-heavy NASDAQ reached a nearly 12-year closing high.
Last week's rally followed the Federal Reserve's announcement of its plans to launch a third round of quantitative easing in an effort to boost the sluggish economy. The Fed said it would purchase additional agency mortgage-backed securities at a pace of $40 billion per month, and it will continue the purchases until the outlook for the labor market improves.
Disappointing manufacturing data also helped to drag stocks lower, with the New York Federal Reserve reporting that conditions for New York manufacturers have deteriorated further in September. The New York Fed said its general business conditions index fell to -10.41 in September from -5.85 in August, with a negative reading indicating a contraction in regional manufacturing activity. Economists had been expecting -2.0.
In corporate news, shares of Lowe's (LOW) closed moderately lower after the home improvement retailer announced that it has withdrawn its offer to acquire Canadian rival Rona for C$14.50 per share in cash.
The major U.S. averages were in the red on Monday as the Dow fell 40.27 points or 0.3 percent to finish at 13,553.10, while the NASDAQ edged down 5.28 points or 0.2 percent to end at 3,178.67 and the S&P 500 slipped 4.58 points or 0.3 percent to close at 1,461.19.
by RTT Staff Writer
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