Plus   Neg

Losing Streak May Continue For Thai Stock Market

The Thai stock market has moved lower in six straight sessions, sliding almost 45 points or 2.7 percent in that span. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just beneath the 1,780-point plateau and it may take further damage again on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is negative after U.S. Donald Trump officially imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports - while tumbling crude oil prices add to the soft sentiment. The European and U.S. markets were up, but the Asian markets are expected to head lower.

The SET finished slightly lower on Thursday following mixed performances from the financial shares and the energy producers.

For the day, the index shed 2.74 points or 0.15 percent to finish at 1,778.90 after trading between 1,772.79 and 1,794.18. Volume was 12.928 billion shares worth 71.855 billion baht. There were 773 decliners and 565 gainers, with 430 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info jumped 1.77 percent, while Thailand Airport shed 0.37 percent, Banpu climbed 1.42 percent, Bangkok Bank advanced 1.46 percent, Bangkok Medical spiked 3.12 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods lost 0.41 percent, Kasikornbank collected 0.44 percent, PTT tumbled 1.48 percent, PTT Exploration and Production added 0.90 percent, PTT Global Chemical perked 1.64 percent, Siam Commercial Bank eased 0.34 percent and Krung Thai Bank was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is firm as stocks fluctuated on Thursday, bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before closing in positive territory.

The Dow added 93.85 points or 0.38 percent to 24,895.21, while the NASDAQ gained 31.30 points or 0.42 percent and the S&P 500 was up 12.17 points or 0.45 percent to 2,738.97.

The higher close came after Trump officially signed proclamations imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

The choppy trading also came as traders looked ahead to the release of the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report later today - which may have a bearing on the FOMC's interest rate forecast.

Ahead of the monthly report, the Labor Department reported a bigger than expected rebound in initial jobless claims in the week ended March 3.

Traders also digested the European Central Bank's latest monetary policy decision, with the ECB leaving rates unchanged, as expected. The ECB's accompanying statement removed a phrase indicating a willingness to increase its asset purchase program if necessary.

Crude oil futures tumbled Thursday on fears that the U.S. dollar will strengthen on rising interest rates. April WTI oil was down $1.03 or 1.7 percent to settle at $60.12/bbl, the lowest in three weeks.

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