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Thai Bourse Tipped To Open In The Red

Ahead of Wednesday's holiday in observance of the birthday of the late King Bhumibol, the Thai stock market had snapped the two-day winning streak in which it had added more than 35 points or 2.1 percent. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just above the 1,670-point plateau and it's expected to catch up on heavy negative sentiment on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is flat to lower, thanks to a decline in crude oil prices. The European markets were down and the U.S. markets were closed and the Asian bourses are tipped to open slightly lower on Thursday.

The SET finished barely lower on Tuesday as losses from the energy producers were offset by support from the financial shares.

For the day, the index eased 0.29 points or 0.02 percent to finish at 1,672.32 after trading between 1,669.10 and 1,677.99. Volume was 10.596 billion shares worth 46.615 billion baht. There were 758 decliners and 517 gainers, with 553 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info skidded 1.40 percent, while Thailand Airport added 0.38 percent, Banpu shed 0.56 percent, Bangkok Bank collected 0.48 percent, Beauty Community jumped 1.68 percent, Bangkok Expressway spiked 2.23 percent, Kasikornbank gained 0.76 percent, Krung Thai Bank lost 0.49 percent, PTT fell 0.48 percent, PTT Exploration and Production dipped 0.36 percent, Siam Commercial Bank advanced 0.35 percent, Siam Concrete was up 0.45 percent and PTT Global Chemical, Bangkok Medical and Charoen Pokphand Foods were unchanged.

There is no lead from Wall Street as the major averages were closed Wednesday for the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush, who died Nov. 30.

In economic news, the Federal Reserve released its Beige Book and most of the twelve Fed districts reported that their economies expanded at a modest or moderate pace from mid-October through late November.

The release of the Beige Book comes as the Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates by a quarter point at its next monetary policy meeting later this month.

Crude oil futures failed to hold earlier gains and settled lower on Wednesday, with traders weighing the prospects of future demand. Crude oil futures for January ended down $0.36 or 0.7 percent at $52.89 a barrel.

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