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Thai Stock Market May Erase Tuesday's Losses

The Thai stock market on Tuesday snapped the four-day winning streak in which it had gathered more than 30 points or 1.8 percent. The Stock Exchange of Thailand remains just beneath the 1,655-point plateau although it figures to rebound on Wednesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests mild upside thanks to optimism over global trade and interest rates - although the upside may be capped by weakness from crude oil prices and generally thin trade during the Lunar New Year. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian markets are tipped to follow that lead.

The SET finished barely lower I light trade on Tuesday following mixed performances from the financial shares and energy producers.

For the day, the index eased 0.53 points or 0.03 percent to finish at 1,653.09 after trading between 1,645.57 and 1,654.98. Volume was 8.18 billion shares worth 25.349 billion baht. There were 783 decliners and 447 gainers, with 485 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info shed 0.28 percent, while Thailand Airport climbed 1.08 percent, Banpu jumped 1.19 percent, Bangkok Expressway skidded 0.97 percent, Kasikornbank dropped0 .99 percent, Krung Thai Bank collected 1.02 percent, PTT Global Chemical shed 0.36 percent, Siam Concrete added 0.43 percent and Siam Commercial Bank, PTT, PTT Exploration and Production, Charoen Pokphand Foods, Bangkok Bank and Bangkok Medical all were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is firm Tuesday as the major averages extended the upward move from the previous session, hitting fresh two-month highs.

The Dow added 172.15 points or 0.68 percent to 25,411.52, while the NASDAQ gained 54.55 points or 0.74 percent to 7,402.08 and the S&P 500 rose 12.83 points or 0.47 percent to 2,737.70.

The continued strength on Wall Street was partly attributed to news of a meeting between Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and President Donald Trump on Monday, which eased concerns about relations between the two.

Optimism about U.S.-China trade talks has contributed to recent buying interest along with indications the prolonged government shutdown did not have a significant impact on the U.S. economy.

Crude oil futures skidded Tuesday as concerns about energy demand resurfaced after data showed a drop in U.S. services sector activity. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for March ended down $0.90 or 1.7 percent at $53.66 a barrel.

Closer to home, the central bank in Thailand will wrap up its monetary policy meeting on Wednesday and then announce its decision on interest rates. The central bank is widely expected to keep its benchmark lending rate unchanged at 1.75 percent.

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