The cash reward for owning Taiwan stocks is larger than almost anywhere else in Asia. Global investors are ditching them anyway.
Even with the benchmark Taiex gauge near a record high, managers have pulled about $680 million from Taiwan stock funds this month, more than any other market in the region. The withdrawals come even as corporate dividends top U.S. yields and just as a record amount of debt globally yields less than zero.
Investors who leaped into Taiwan stocks earlier this year aren’t eager to do it again: the economy’s firms are so entwined with the global technology supply chain that they’ve been particularly vulnerable to the trade war and a slowdown in the smartphone market.
"High dividend yields make Taiwan stocks attractive to global investors in a low interest rate environment, but it’s only one of the elements to consider," said Agnes Lin, a global market strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management Taiwan Ltd. The island’s weak economic fundamentals, partly the result of the U.S.-China trade clash, are also turning investors off the equities, she said.
The Taiex measure rose 0.5% as of 9:08 a.m. Monday in Taipei.