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Losses May Accelerate For Thai Stock Market

The Thai stock market on Wednesday wrote a finish to the two-day winning streak in which it had gathered almost 10 points or 0.7 percent. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just beneath the 1,635-point plateau and it's expected to open under pressure again on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is soft on renewed recession fears following another big rate hike from the FOMC. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were down and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The SET finished modestly lower on Wednesday following losses from the financial shares and a mixed picture from the energy companies.

For the day, the index fell 5.14 points or 0.31 percent to finish at 1,633.45 after trading between 1,633.41 and 1,642.82. Volume was 17.740 billion shares worth 70.140 billion baht. There were 1,248 decliners and 502 gainers, with 453 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info climbed 1.31 percent, while Thailand Airport fell 0.34 percent, Banpu rallied 2.24 percent, Bangkok Bank slid 0.37 percent, Bangkok Expressway retreated 1.58 percent, B. Grimm plummeted 4.23 percent, BTS Group shed 0.57 percent, CP All Public lost 0.43 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods dipped 0.40 percent, Energy Absolute tumbled 2.20 percent, Gulf dropped 0.93 percent, IRPC added 0.62 percent, Kasikornbank was down 0.33 percent, PTT Exploration and Production soared 2.95 percent, PTT Global Chemical sank 0.56 percent, SCG Packaging skidded 0.90 percent, Siam Commercial Bank gave away 0.47 percent, Siam Concrete plunged 2.67 percent, Thai Oil spiked 2.27 percent, True Corporation rallied 2.06 percent and TTB Bank, Asset World, Bangkok Dusit Medical, Krung Thai Bank, Krung Thai Card, PTT Oil & Retail and PTT were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street ends up negative as the major averages were steady throughout Wednesday session until the FOMC's rate decision sent them tumbling, closing near daily lows.

The Dow plummeted 522.45 points or 1.70 percent to finish at 30,183.78, while the NASDAQ tumbled 204.86 points or 1.79 percent to close at 11,220.19 and the S&P sank 66.00 points or 1.71 percent to end at 3,789.93.

The late-day volatility came after the Fed raised interest rates by another three-quarters of a percentage point and signaled further aggressive rate hikes for the remainder of the year.

Citing its dual goals of maximum employment and inflation at a rate of 2 percent over the longer run, the Fed decided to raise its target range for the federal funds rate by 75 basis points to 3 to 3.25 percent.

The move marks the third straight 75 basis point rate hike by the Fed and lifts rates to their highest level since early 2008. With inflation remaining elevated, the Fed also said it expects that ongoing interest rate increases will be appropriate.

Crude oil prices drifted lower Wednesday amid concerns about the outlook for energy demand after the Federal Reserve's announcement of a sharp hike in interest rates raised fears about a recession. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for November ended lower by $1.00 or 1.2 percent at $82.94 a barrel.

Closer to home, Thailand will provide August figures for imports, exports and trade balance later today. Imports are expected to jump 17.7 percent on year, down from 23.9 percent in July. Exports are called higher by an annual 7.55 percent, up from 4.3 percent in the previous month. The trade deficit is pegged at $3.1 billion following the $3.66 billion shortfall a month earlier.

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