Higher Open Predicted For Thai Stock Market

Ahead of the break for the Songkran Festival, the Thai stock market snapped the two-day winning streak in which it had gained almost 10 points or 0.6 percent. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just above the 1,540-point plateau although it's looking at a green light for Friday's trade.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on optimism for economic recovery and rising crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are expected to follow suit.

The SET finished sharply lower on Monday following losses from the financial shares and energy producers.

For the day, the index tumbled 25.22 points or 1.61 percent to finish at 1,541.12 after trading between 1,539.24 and 1,562.07. Volume was 29.445 billion shares worth 78.223 billion baht. There were 1,508 decliners and 300 gainers, with 208 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info retreated 1.47 percent, while Thailand Airport declined 1.50 percent, Asset World surrendered 2.44 percent, Bangkok Asset Management tanked 2.38 percent, Bangkok Bank tumbled 1.99 percent, Bangkok Dusit Medical shed 0.45 percent, Bangkok Expressway skidded 1.83 percent, BTS Group dropped 1.09 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods sank 0.85 percent, Gulf lost 0.75 percent, Kasikornbank plunged 3.15 percent, Krung Thai Bank slid 2.56 percent, PTT Oil & Retail fell 2.42 percent, PTT dipped 0.64 percent, PTT Global Chemical weakened 1.61 percent, SCG Packaging slipped 1.59 percent, Siam Commercial Bank gave away 2.74 percent, Siam Concrete was down 0.49 percent, TMB Bank eased 0.83 percent and PTT Exploration and Production was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is broadly positive as stocks moved sharply higher on Thursday, offsetting losses from the previous session and sending the Dow and the S&P 500 to fresh record closing highs.

The Dow spiked 305.10 points or 0.90 percent to finish at 34,035.99, while the NASDAQ jumped 180.92 points or 1.31 percent to end at 14,038.76 and the S&P 500 gained 45.76 points or 1.11 percent to close at 4,170.42.

The rally on Wall Street followed a batch of largely upbeat U.S. economic data, including a Commerce Department report showing retail sales spiked much more than expected in March. A separate report from by the Labor Department said first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits pulled back much more than expected last week.

Also, The National Association of Home Builders noted a modest increase in U.S. homebuilder confidence in April, while the Federal Reserve reported a rebound in industrial production last month.

Oil futures settled higher on Thursday, extending gains to a fourth straight session, continuing to ride on the recent upward revision in the global oil demand forecast by the International Energy Agency. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for May ended higher by $0.31 or 0.5 percent at $63.46 a barrel.

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