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Taiwan Shares May Hand Back Thursday's Gains

The Taiwan stock market moved higher again on Thursday, one session after it had ended the two-day winning streak in which it had gathered almost 30 points or 0.3 percent. The Taiwan Stock Exchange now rests just beneath the 10,510-point plateau although it figures to head south again on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower, with profit taking expected following recent rallies - although earnings news and crude oil figure to limit the downside. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were mixed and the Asian markets are expected to split the difference.

The TSE finished modestly higher on Thursday following gains from the financial shares, technology stocks and cement companies.

For the day, the index climbed 89.26 points or 0.86 percent to finish at 10,508.37 after trading between 10,427.83 and 10,516.23 on turnover of 109.083 billion Taiwan dollars.

Among the actives, Cathay Financial climbed 1.53 percent, while Mega Financial collected 0.39 percent, Fubon Financial added 0.43 percent, Taiwan Cement spiked 2.03 percent, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company jumped 1.17 percent, Largan Precision gained 0.45 percent, Hon Hai Precision advanced 1.73 percent, AU Optronics surged 1.24 percent and Innolux soared 2.75 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is cloudy as stocks turned mixed on Thursday after an initial move to the upside - although the Dow did hit a fresh record closing high.

The Dow rose 85.54 points or 0.4 percent to 21,796.55, but the NASDAQ fell 40.56 points or 0.6 percent to 6,382.19 and the S&P eased 2.41 points or 0.1 percent to 2,475.42.

The early strength reflected a positive reaction to earnings news from big-name companies, including Verizon (VZ) and Facebook (FB) - but then profit taking set in.

In economic news, the Commerce Department noted an increase in durable goods orders in June, while the Labor Department said that initial jobless claims rose more than expected in the week ended July 22.

Crude oil futures continued to march near $50 a barrel Thursday, powered by hopes that OPEC can re-balance the global oil market. September WTI oil gained 29 cents or 0.6 percent to $49.04/bbl, the highest since May 30.

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