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Taiwan Market May Test Resistance At 8,400 Points

The Taiwan stock market has moved higher now in consecutive trading days, gathering more than 120 points or 1.5 percent along the way. The Taiwan Stock Exchange closed just above the 8,385-point level, and now the market is tipped to open higher again on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is broadly positive following an upbeat employment report from the United States. The data had largely been prices in, however, so the regional markets figure to open strong and then gradually ease on profit taking throughout the day. The U.S. and European markets finished firmly higher on Friday.

The TSE finished modestly higher on Friday, again fueled by the heavily weighted technology stocks and financial shares.

For the day, the index jumped 76.34 points or 0.92 percent to finish at 8,387.35 after trading between 8,356.93 and 8,409.03 on turnover of 95.85 billion Taiwan dollars.

Among the gainers, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. spiked 1.96 percent, while Advanced Semiconductor Engineering surged 5.19 percent, Catcher Technology climbed 5.77 percent, Wei Chuan Foods collected 2.40 percent, Cathay Financial Holding added 1.81 percent and Yuanta Financial Holding jumped 1.25 percent.

The lead from Wall Street suggests further upside as stocks moved sharply higher on Friday, adding to the strong gains posted in the previous session. The markets benefited from a positive reaction to the monthly jobs report.

The major averages saw further upside going into the close, ending the session at their best levels of the day. The Dow jumped 165.55 points or 1.1 percent to 15,794.08, while the NASDAQ soared 68.74 points or 1.7 percent to 4,125.86 and the S&P 500 surged 23.59 points or 1.3 percent to 1,797.02. With the gains on the day, the major averages closed higher for the week as the S&P 500 advanced 0.8 percent, while the Dow and the NASDAQ rose 0.6 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

The rally followed the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report, which said that non-farm payroll employment increased by 113,000 jobs in January following a slightly upwardly revised increase of 75,000 jobs in December. Economists had been expecting a gain of 180,000 jobs.

Despite the weaker than expected job growth, the unemployment rate still edged down to 6.6 percent in January from 6.7 percent in December - falling to its lowest level since hitting 6.5 percent in October of 2008.

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