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Higher Open Predicted For Thai Stock Market

The Thai stock market has finished higher in back-to-back sessions, advancing more than 35 points or 2 percent along the way. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just beneath the 1,780-point plateau and it inherits another positive lead for Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is firm thanks to economic optimism and a surge in crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were higher and the Asian markets figure to follow suit.

The SET finished sharply higher on Wednesday following gains from the financial shares and the energy producers.

For the day, the index surged 24.82 points or 1.42 percent to finish at 1,778.53 after trading between 1,758.07 and 1,779.55. Volume was 12.689 billion shares worth 85.850 billion baht. There were 817 gainers and 524 decliners, with 330 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info spiked 2.88 percent, while Thailand Airport surged 3.68 percent, Bangkok Bank jumped 1.49 percent, Bangchak Corporation soared 2.45 percent, Bangkok Medical added 0.48 percent, Bangkok Expressway gained 0.65 percent, Charoen Pokphand Food soared 3.33 percent, Kasikornbank climbed 2.16 percent, Krung Thai Bank collected 1.04 percent, PTT advanced 2.27 percent, PTT Exploration and Production jumped 1.50 percent, PTT Global Chemical perked 1.47 percent and Banpu was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks moved mostly higher on Wednesday, adding to gains from the previous session as the major averages hit fresh record closing highs.

The Dow rose 98.67 points or 0.40 percent to 24,922.68, while the NASDAQ advanced 58.63 points or 0.84 percent to 7,065.53 and the S&P climbed 17.25 points or 0.64 percent to 2,713.06.

The continued strength on Wall Street came as upbeat data added to recent optimism about the economic outlook.

The Institute for Supply Management said growth in manufacturing activity unexpectedly accelerated in December, while the Commerce Department noted a bigger than expected increase in construction spending in November.

Stocks remained positive following the release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest monetary policy meeting - which showed that most participants reiterated their support for continuing a gradual approach to raising interest rates.

Meanwhile, the Fed said it raised its economic projections due to the massive tax reform bill passed by Republicans and signed by President Donald Trump.

Crude oil futures continued to soar Wednesday thanks to the threat of supply disruptions from the Middle East and a weaker dollar. WTI light sweet crude oil was up $1.26 or 2.1 percent to $61.63/bbl, the highest since December 2014.

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