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Thai Stock Market May Extend Friday's Gains

The Thai stock market on Friday halted the six-day slide in which it had tumbled more than 65 points or 4 percent. The Stock Exchange of Thailand now rests just above the 1,630-point plateau and it may add to its winnings on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on renewed expectations for fiscal stimulus. The European and U.S. markets were sharply higher and the Asian bourses are tipped to open in similar fashion.

The SET finished sharply higher on Friday following gains from the financial shares, energy producers and cement companies.

For the day, the index soared 27.37 points or 1.71 percent to finish at 1,631.40 after trading between 1,607.22 and 1,632.42. Volume was 23.700 billion shares worth 66.019 billion baht. There were 1,207 gainers and 479 decliners, with 315 stocks finishing unchanged.

Among the actives, Advanced Info added 0.93 percent, Thailand Airport climbed 1.44 percent, Banpu soared 5.31 percent, Bangkok Bank spiked 3.59 percent, Bangkok Medical shed 0.43 percent, Bangkok Expressway lost 0.93 percent, BTS Group sank 0.80 percent, Charoen Pokphand Foods advanced 0.87 percent, Kasikornbank collected 1.61 percent, Krung Thai Bank jumped 2.31 percent, PTT accelerated 1.18 percent, PTT Exploration and Production rose 2.03 percent, PTT Global Chemical gained 0.48 percent, Siam Commercial Bank surged 2.90 percent, Siam Concrete perked 1.48 percent and TMB Bank gathered 1.97 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is broadly positive as stocks opened higher on Friday and the gains accelerated as the day progressed.

The Dow added 306.61 points or 1.20 percent to 25,886.01, while the NASDAQ jumped 129.37 points or 1.67 percent to 7,895.99 and the S&P 500 rose 41.08 points or 1.44 percent to 2,888.68. For the week, the Dow shed 1.5 percent, the NASDAQ lost 0.8 percent and the S&P fell 1 percent.

The rally on Wall Street reflected optimism about the world's central banks providing stimulus in order to prevent a global recession. European Central Bank official Olli Rehn expressed the need for significant easing in September to support the flagging eurozone economy, spurring investors.

The expectations for more stimulus fueled a pullback by U.S. treasuries and a subsequent increase in bond yields. The yield on the benchmark ten-year note had dropped below the two-year yield on Wednesday, sparking fears of an impending recession and a sell-off on Wall Street.

In economic news, the University of Michigan noted a significant deterioration in U.S. consumer sentiment in August. Also, the Commerce Department reported an unexpected slump in housing starts in July but a sharper than expected increase in building permits.

Crude oil futures settled higher Friday as recession fears faded amid hopes global central banks will announce further stimulus to revive economic growth. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for September ended up $0.40 or 0.7 percent at $54.87 a barrel.

Closer to home, Thailand will release Q2 numbers for gross domestic product later today; in the three months prior, GDP was up 1.0 percent on quarter and 2.8 percent on year.

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