Taiwan authorises government intervention as markets tumble

TAIPEI, March 19 (Reuters) - Taiwan’s government on Thursday authorised its National Stabilisation Fund to intervene and buy stocks on the market, as the island’s bourse continues to fall on coronavirus worries.

Taiwan’s stock market is down almost 28% so far this year, and closed down 5.8% on Thursday.

The move to intervene, which had been well flagged by the government, will be the 7th time it has been authorised to do so, the last time being in 2015.

Taiwan’s central bank earlier on Thursday cut its policy rate for the first time since 2016 and to an all-time low number as the coronavirus pandemic threatens the island’s export-reliant economy, which is a key part of global technology supply chain.

Taiwan has reported 108 cases of the virus, with the number of infected people rising fast in the past few days, mostly those who have been infected abroad. (Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Emily Chan Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)