Taipei, April 19 (CNA) Shares in Taiwan on Wednesday fell below their quarterly moving average of 9,704 points to their lowest close since March 10 as investors reacted nervously to the call for general elections in Britain on June 8, dealers said.
The announcement by Prime Minister Theresa May to hold an early election to prevent "political game-playing" ahead of Brexit and give Britain the "strong and stable leadership" needed to deliver Brexit sent European and U.S. stocks lower, and Asia reacted the same way.
Taiwan shares closed down 106.62 points, or 1.09 percent, at 9,639.94, after moving between 9,725.39 and 9,631.64 on turnover of NT$87.38 billion (US$2.87 billion).
An increasingly uncertain international situation and heavy foreign exchange losses incurred by listed companies in the first quarter led all major stock categories to lose ground during the session Wednesday.
The bellwether electronics sector and financial, plastics and chemical, and construction shares all fell around 1 percent.
The 1.12 percent decline in financial shares on Wednesday continued the weakness in the sector that has persisted for nearly a month and adversely affected the broader market more recently, dealers said.
Cathay Financial (國泰金)closed 1.49 percent lower at NT$46.20, while Chang Hwa Commercial Bank (彰銀) shed 0.4 percent to close at NT$17.50. Fubon Financial (富邦金) remained unchanged at NT$46.50.
Electronics stocks fell 0.97 percent.
Contract chip maker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC,台積電), the world's largest contract chip maker, fell NT$0.80 to end at NT$186.50, while Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海), the world's largest contract electronics maker, lost 1.24 percent to close at NT$95.80.
Smartphone camera lens supplier Largan Precision Co. (大立光) closed down 1.26 percent to close at NT$4,720.
Foreign institutional investors sold a net NT$10.97 billion in shares on Wednesday.
The keys to the stock market's movement in the near future will be the first quarter earnings reports of domestic companies and flows of foreign capital, dealers said.
(By Evelyn Kao)