Taiwan remains at fore of Asian primary markets

As Powerchip prepares to launch a new convertible, First Financial holds an analysts'' meeting for a debut GDR and Cathay Financial mandates a benchmark equity offering.

Taiwan continues to dominate equity issuance from non-Japan Asia, with tech companies starting to take advantage of soaring stock prices and financial holding companies seeking to accumulate bigger war chests as consolidation gathers pace.

The big news of the week so far is plans by Cathay Financial to issue a $400 million to $600 million GDR offering. Asian specialists say JPMorgan has been mandated to lead the deal, although the bank itself declined to comment. A number also believe that a second and as yet undisclosed bank has been bought on board - a rumour fuelled by the fact that virtually all benchmark equity offerings now have more than one bookrunner.

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