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Taiwan: Stocks up, look set for 10% gain in 2016

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[TAIPEI] Taiwan stocks rose on Friday in the last trading day of the year, with the main index looking set to post an annual gain of just over 10 per cent, outperforming most of its Asian peers.

The day's gains came as the government said it would halve the transaction tax on day trades in local shares, in a bid to bolster thin trading in the island's stock market.

Taiwan's financial markets will be shut on Monday for the New Year holiday weekend. They resume trade on Tuesday.

As of 0320 GMT, the main Taiex index was up 0.8 per cent at 9,228.78 points, after closing down 0.5 per cent in the previous session to ease off one-week highs.

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If the gains hold by the end of trading, the main index will close out 2016 around 10.7 per cent higher, recouping the 10 per cent loss it suffered in 2015.

By comparison, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index looked set for a yearly gain of 3.3 per cent.

The Taiwan electronics subindex rose 0.6 per cent, while the financials subindex gained 0.7 per cent.

Large-capped bellwethers, key to the index's performance, were higher.

The world's largest contract chipmaker TSMC was up 0.3 per cent, while Apple Inc supplier and electronics manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry was 0.7 per cent ahead.

The Taiwan dollar firmed NT$0.137 to NT$32.175 per US dollar.