l Recent economic news and key data were, at best, mixed. Though Taiwan's export orders in February 2013 were down 14.5 percent annually to just US$29 billion—which was the lowest in two years—Taiwan's export orders rose 1.1 percent year-on-year in the first two months to a record US$66.1 billion. The 9-day Lunar New Year (LNY) holiday was considered a factor for the higher demand of Taiwanese products, particularly in China.
l On the other hand, Taiwan's unemployment rate in February went up slightly to 4.24 percent, which translated to an increase of just 0.08 percentage points from a month earlier. The slight rise in February’s unemployment partly reflected an increase in the number of people who quit their jobs in search of better opportunities and also for those who were out of work because their temporary contracts had expired.
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