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Thai Stock Market May Extend Winning Streak

The Thai stock market has tracked higher in back-to-back sessions, collecting more than 15 percent or 1 percent along the way. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just above the 1,655-point plateau and it's expected to see additional support on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets remains upbeat on optimism that another U.S. government shutdown can be avoided. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are predicted to open in similar fashion.

The SET finished modestly higher on Wednesday following gains from the cement stocks and the energy producers.

For the day, the index climbed 13.24 points or 0.81 percent to finish at 1,655.73 after trading between 1,645.84 and 1,657.12. Volume was 13.092 billion shares worth 45.303 billion baht. There were 897 gainers and 471 decliners, with 438 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advance Info added 0.55 percent, while Thailand Airport jumped 1.47 percent, Banpu gained 0.60 percent, Bangkok Medical perked 0.42 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods advanced 0.92 percent, PTT climbed 1.03 percent, PTT Exploration and Production soared 2.06 percent, PTT Global Chemical surged 2.59 percent, Siam Concrete rose 1.29 percent and Siam Commercial Bank, Kasikornbank, Krung Thai Bank, Bangkok Bank and Bangkok Expressway all were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks saw considerable volatility on Wednesday but still finished in the green as the major averages hit fresh two-month closing highs.

The Dow added 117.51 points or 0.46 percent to 25,543.27, while the NASDAQ gained 5.76 points or 0.08 percent to 7,420.38 and the S&P 500 rose 8.30 points or 0.30 percent to 2,753.03.

The higher close on Wall Street partly reflected optimism about avoiding another government shutdown thanks to a tentative deal reached by lawmakers.

The markets also benefited from continued optimism about U.S.-China trade talks after reports the U.S. may delay raising tariffs on Chinese goods if the two sides are close to a deal.

In economic news, the Labor Department said consumer prices were unchanged for the third straight month in January.

Crude oil extended gains Wednesday, reflecting optimism about U.S.-China trade talks and the cut in production revealed by Saudi Arabia. Crude for March delivery advanced $0.80 to $53.90 a barrel.

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