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Taiwan Shares To Remain Stuck In Neutral

The Taiwan stock market has moved lower in consecutive trading days, tumbling more than 220 points or 2.2 percent along the way. The Taiwan Stock Exchange now rests just above the 9,915-point plateau and it's looking at another soft start again on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is flat to lower, thanks to a decline in crude oil prices. The European markets were down and the U.S. markets were closed and the Asian bourses are tipped to open slightly lower on Thursday.

The TSE finished sharply lower on Wednesday following losses from the technology stocks, cement companies and financial shares.

For the day, the index plunged 166.80 points or 1.65 percent to finish at 9,916.74 after trading between 9,895.29 and 9,971.98 on turnover of 113.71 billion Taiwan dollars.

Among the actives, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company tumbled 3.42 percent, while Hon Hai Precision skidded 2.45 percent, Largan Precision dropped 3.71 percent, United Microelectronics Corporation retreated 2.12 percent, AsusTek Computer declined 1.82 percent, AU Optronics contracted 1.57 percent, Asia Cement eased 0.15 percent, Taiwan Cement shed 0.57 percent, Formosa Plastic lost 0.49 percent, Cathay Financial was down 1.12 percent, Fubon Financial fell 0.82 percent, CTBC Financial eased 0.97 percent, Mega Financial slid 0.77 percent and Chunghwa Telecom added 0.47 percent.

There is no lead from Wall Street as the major averages were closed Wednesday for the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush, who died Nov. 30.

In economic news, the Federal Reserve released its Beige Book and most of the twelve Fed districts reported that their economies expanded at a modest or moderate pace from mid-October through late November.

The release of the Beige Book comes as the Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates by a quarter point at its next monetary policy meeting later this month.

Crude oil futures failed to hold earlier gains and settled lower on Wednesday, with traders weighing the prospects of future demand. Crude oil futures for January ended down $0.36 or 0.7 percent at $52.89 a barrel.

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