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Thai Bourse May Find Traction On Wednesday

The Thai stock market has finished lower in back-to-back trading days, sliding almost 10 points or 0.6 percent along the way. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just above the 1,720-point plateau although it's predicted to open higher on Wednesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed and flat on concerns over the outlook for interest rates. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were mixed and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The SET finished modestly lower on Tuesday following losses from the financial shares and the energy producers.

For the day, the index shed 9.55 points or 0.55 percent to finish at 1,721.48 after trading between 1,721.33 and 1,734.35. Volume was 24.073 billion shares worth 65.334 billion baht. There were 1,049 decliners and 480 gainers, with 416 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Thailand Airport shed 0.68 percent, while Banpu tumble 2.04 percent, Bangkok Bank sank 0.76 percent, Bangkok Medical skidded 1.96 percent, Bangkok Expressway dropped 0.88 percent, BTS Group gained 0.79 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods fell 0.83 percent, Kasikornbank dipped 0.27 percent, Krung Thai Bank lost 0.52 percent, PTT retreated 1.04 percent, PTT Exploration and Production declined 1.12 percent, Siam Commercial Bank slid 0.36 percent, Siam Concrete rose 0.43 percent, TMB Bank plunged 2.07 percent and Advanced Info and PTT Global Chemical were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is cautiously optimistic as stocks opened lower on Tuesday but recovered to finish mixed.

The Dow shed 22.65 points or 0.08 percent to 26,783.49, while the NASDAQ added 43.35 points or 0.54 percent to 8,141.73 and the S&P 500 rose 3.68 points or 0.12 percent to 2,979.63.

Traders seemed reluctant to make significant moves ahead of Congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell later today. The Fed chief is not likely to specifically lay out the central bank's plans to lawmakers, but traders will analyze his comments for clues about the outlook for rates.

Wednesday will also see the release of the minutes of the Fed's last monetary policy meeting, which may shed additional light on the central bank's decision to make notable changes to its accompanying statement.

Crude oil futures settled higher Tuesday as traders weighed crude demand and supply prospects ahead of weekly inventory data. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for August ended up $0.17 or 0.3 percent at $57.83 a barrel.

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