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Thai Stock Market May Find Support At 1,600 Points

The Thai stock market has finished lower in six straight sessions, tumbling more than 65 points or 4 percent along the way. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just beneath the 1,605-point plateau and it may stop the bleeding on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is cautiously optimistic as Thursday's selloff on recession fears may have been overdone. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were mostly higher - and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The SET finished modestly lower on Thursday following losses from the energy producers and a mixed picture from the financial sector.

For the day, the index dropped 15.42 points or 0.95 percent to finish at 1,604.03 after trading between 1,590.55 and 1,614.08. Volume was 23.104 billion shares worth 100.940 billion baht. There were 1,101 decliners and 617 gainers, with 317 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info tumbled 3.57 percent, while Thailand Airport climbed 1.09 percent, Banpu plunged 4.24 percent, Bangkok Bank jumped 1.21 percent, Bangkok Medical dropped 1.69 percent, Bangkok Expressway shed 0.92 percent, BTS Group advanced 0.81 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods added 0.88 percent, Krung Thai Bank sank 1.14 percent, PTT plunged 2.31 percent, PTT Exploration and Production declined 1.60 percent, PTT Global Chemical fell 0.48 percent, Siam Commercial Bank contracted 2.43 percent, Siam Concrete was down 0.98 percent, TMB Bank slid 2.56 percent and Kasikornbank was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street provides little clarity as stocks showed a lack of direction on Thursday, bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before eventually closing mixed.

The Dow added 99.97 points or 0.39 percent to 25,579.39, while the NASDAQ fell 7.32 points or 0.09 percent to 7,766.62 and the S&) 500 rose 7.00 points or 0.25 percent to 2,847.60.

The choppy trading on Wall Street came as traders digested an avalanche of economic data, including mixed reports on retail sales and industrial output.

The Commerce Department reported U.S. retail sales climbed by much more than expected in July, but the Federal Reserve unexpectedly noted a modest drop in industrial production in July.

Also, the New York and Philadelphia Federal Reserves saw continued growth in manufacturing activity in August, while the Labor Department reported a bigger than expected increase in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits last week.

Crude oil prices saw further downside on Thursday, extending losses from the previous day on continued concerns about the outlook for global demand. China's threat to retaliate against U.S. tariffs weighed heavily on oil prices as West Texas Intermediate fell $0.48 or 0.87 percent to $54.47.

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