Taiwan earthquake:


Data flow was limited during the timezone here today. The only item of note was Caixin/S&P Global Services and Composite PMI for March. The previous PMIs from China for March all improved, as did today’s number.

The bigger event was the Magnitude 7.7 earthquake just off the east coast of Taiwan. This resulted in tsunami alerts being issued for Japan’s Okinawa island chain (since withdrawn) as well as coastal areas of Taiwan. The earthquake was the largest since 1999. Authorities reported 26 buildings collapsed, there was one fatality and more than 50 injured.

For markets the implications of the quake for chip production were an issue. As I update the information on this is that the quake and following aftershocks caused TSMC and UMC to evacuate staff from some fabs in the Hsinchu and Southern Taiwan Science Parks. The main semiconductor production areas are to the west of the island, where there are no reports of major damage as of now (see screen shot below, the blue star is the epicentre). The earthquake stopped some production lines at the Zhunan, Taiwan fabs of TSMC and Powerchip, while plants run by chip testing giant KYEC were evacuated.

For major FX ranges were small only. It seems Asia FX is awaiting US data, nonfarm payroll, due on Friday.

As a heads up, China is out for the rest of this week, on holiday on Thursday and Friday. Hong Kong is out on Thursday.

taiwan quake 03 April 2024 map 2