Major Quake in Taiwan Raises Concerns for Global Supply Chain

By Patricia Miller


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Powerful earthquake in Taiwan raises concerns for global chip supply. Tech stocks face disruptions, while retail investors monitor the impact.

The landscape-oriented image vividly illustrates the concept of a supply chain shock, embodying the disruption and interconnected complexities of the global economy through the symbolism of a broken chain and scattered elements of global trade.
Concerns Mount as Taiwan Earthquake Hits Chipmaker TSMC

What You Need To Know

A powerful earthquake in Taiwan, the strongest in 25 years, has triggered concerns about its impact on the global supply chain. Taiwan is responsible for about 90% of chipmaker TSMC's production, making it a critical hub for the manufacturing of chips for global companies. Although Taiwan Semiconductor Mfg. Co. Ltd. (NYSE: TSM) has evacuated some of its fabrication plants and ensured the safety of its systems, there are worries about potential damage to the fragile equipment needed for chip production.

The earthquake has caused casualties and building collapses in Hualien and has been felt as aftershocks in Taipei and even Shanghai. If the chip foundries in Taiwan sustain serious damage, it will have far-reaching consequences worldwide and could emphasize the need for the United States to prioritize domestic production to reduce reliance on Taiwan.

In response to the earthquake, shares of TSMC, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), and supplier Foxconn have fallen, as well as shares of flat-panel maker Au Optronics.

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Why This Is Important for Retail Investors

  1. Impact on Tech Stocks: Retail investors who hold investments in technology companies may see their portfolios affected by the earthquake in Taiwan. Companies like TSMC, Apple, and Foxconn could experience disruptions in their supply chain, potentially leading to a decrease in stock prices.

  2. Global Supply Chain Disruptions: The earthquake highlights the vulnerability and interconnectedness of the global supply chain. Retail investors must be aware that an event in one part of the world can have far-reaching consequences for companies and industries worldwide, impacting their investments.

  3. Potential Chip Shortages: If the chip foundries in Taiwan sustain significant damage, it could result in chip shortages. This can affect various sectors, including automotive, consumer electronics, and telecommunications. Retail investors should consider the potential impact on companies they have invested in or are planning to invest in.

  4. Focus on Domestic Production: With a greater emphasis on onshore production, retail investors should monitor the response from governments, such as the United States, in terms of promoting domestic chip manufacturing. This shift in strategy may create investment opportunities in companies aiming to bolster their domestic chip production capabilities.

  5. Market Volatility: The earthquake in Taiwan and other global events can contribute to market volatility. Retail investors need to be prepared for potential swings in stock prices and should consider diversifying their portfolios to mitigate risk during times of uncertainty.

How Can You Use This Information?

Here are some of the investing ideas that can be explored using this information:

Sector Rotation

Given the potential impact on the global chip supply chain, investors may consider rotating their investments to sectors less affected by the earthquake, such as healthcare or utilities.

Sector Rotation is the practice of shifting investment capital from one industry sector to another to take advantage of the economic cycle.

Defensive investing

With market volatility likely to increase due to supply chain disruptions, retail investors may opt for defensive investing strategies, focusing on stable and resilient companies, such as those in consumer staples or healthcare sectors.

Defensive Investing focuses on securing a portfolio by choosing companies that are less sensitive to economic downturns.


The earthquake highlights the importance of diversification in an investment portfolio. Retail investors may consider diversifying across various sectors and regions to mitigate the impact of potential chip shortages and supply chain disruptions.

Diversification spreads investments across various assets to reduce risk and volatility in a portfolio.

Growth Investing

Despite the short-term challenges posed by the earthquake, there may still be opportunities for growth investors. Companies involved in the development and deployment of alternative chip manufacturing technologies or those driving innovation in other sectors could present potential growth prospects.

Growth investing focuses on stocks of companies expected to grow at an above-average rate compared to other stocks in the market; learn more in our article titled 'What is Growth Investing?'.

Ethical Investing

Some retail investors may choose to align their investments with their values. In the wake of the earthquake, they may explore ethical investing options, considering companies involved in sustainable and responsible chip production or supporting the recovery efforts in affected areas.

Ethical investing prioritizes a company's social and environmental impact, aligning investments with the investor's personal values.

Read What Others Are Saying

MSN: Taiwan hit with 7.4 earthquake, endangering tech supply chain

Bloomberg: Taiwan Earthquake Latest: Four Dead, Dozens Injured, Tsunami Warning Lowered

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What you should read next:

Popular ETFs

Some investors prefer to invest in stocks via an exchange-traded fund for ease and reduced risk. In response to supply chain disruptions, investors might consider Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) that focus on sectors either resilient to or potentially benefiting from these challenges. Here are several ETFs that could be relevant:

  • ProShares Supply Chain Logistics ETF (SUPL): This ETF focuses on companies involved in the logistics and supply chain management sector, including those that stand to benefit from solving supply chain inefficiencies.

  • FlexShares STOXX Global Broad Infrastructure Index Fund (NFRA): Infrastructure plays a critical role in mitigating supply chain disruptions. NFRA invests in a wide range of infrastructure companies, including those in transportation and logistics, which could benefit from increased spending to improve supply chain resilience.

  • iShares Global Tech ETF (IXN): Technology is pivotal in addressing supply chain challenges through innovations like blockchain, IoT, and AI for tracking and efficiency. IXN provides exposure to global technology companies that are at the forefront of developing and implementing these solutions.

  • VanEck Environmental Services ETF (EVX): Environmental services companies, which include waste management and recycling firms, can play a role in supply chain sustainability and efficiency. EVX gives investors access to companies that are essential in managing the environmental impact of supply chains.

  • Amplify Advanced Battery Metals and Materials ETF (BATT): Supply chain disruptions have highlighted the importance of critical materials for technology and energy sectors. BATT invests in companies involved in the production of advanced battery metals and materials, which are crucial for electric vehicles and renewable energy systems.

  • Pacer Global Cash Cows Dividend ETF (GCOW): This ETF targets companies across the globe with high dividend yields, which often includes firms with strong cash flows and solid business models that may be more resilient to supply chain disruptions.

Explore more on these topics:



This article does not provide any financial advice and is not a recommendation to deal in any securities or product. Investments may fall in value and an investor may lose some or all of their investment. Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.

Patricia Miller does not hold any position in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Patricia Miller has not been paid to produce this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, does not hold a position or positions in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, has not been paid for the production of this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

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