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Baht will continue to remain strong throughout 2020

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Baht will continue to remain strong throughout 2020 | The Thaiger
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The Thai baht will continue to maintain its strength for the rest of 2020. It will remain strong, propelled by the increased surpluses in the Thai current account and the country’s trade balance.

Kobsidthi Silpachai, KBank’s head of capital markets research, predicts that the Thai baht will float around 29.75 against the US dollar for the first half of 2020, and then appreciate to 29.25 at the end of the year, said

Reuters report that the Thai baht was Asia’s star-performance currency during 2019, rising by more than 7% against the greenback.

The baht continued to leverage off the country’s massive current account surplus over 2019, rising inflows of tourism revenue and the near-record foreign reserves – all this despite subdued local economic growth. The foreign reserves made the Thai baht the go-to currency for investors with with its ‘safe haven’ reputation for actual investment or speculation.

Thailand’s current account surplus totalled $33.2 billion as of last November, accounting for 5.3% of GDP, according to the Bangkok Post. The country’s trade surplus with the US was $19 billion for last year. Thailand’s GDP growth is forecast to be around 2.7% this year.

An adjustment to ease loan-to-value (LTV) regulations is not forecast to massively rev up sagging property sales as the purchasing power of Thais is being tempered by elevated household debt – some 79% of GDP.

The Bank of Thailand eased the tightened LTV rules governing mortgage lending which shortens the minimum debt-servicing period for first mortgages required for those seeking a second loan for homes priced below 10 million baht.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Thai Baht on the slide over fears of spread of Coronavirus outside China

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Thai Baht on the slide over fears of spread of Coronavirus outside China | The Thaiger

What goes up must go down. The Thai baht has continued to weaken against leading international currencies, trading at 31.70 to the US$ in yesterday’s trade. The falls reflect regional concern over the coronavirus spreading beyond China. In the past few days both central South Korea and parts of northern Italy have reported outbreaks of the virus.

Kasikorn Research Centre report the baht had weakened along with the Chinese yuan and other regional currencies amid concerns about the Covid-19 outbreak.

The SET also plungedalong with other Asian stocks due to concerns over the spread of the virus. In addition, the baht fell on technical selling orders after it broke the 31.50 baht/USdollar level.

Signs of a weak economic outlook, as well as net foreign selling orders for Thai stocks and bonds pressured the baht sentiment, according to the Kasikorn report. The US dollar also rose on positive data on the US economy.

Last Friday, the baht had closed at 31.62/USdollar, having hit an eight month low of 31.69 baht/USD.

Up to the end of this week, KBank expects the baht to move within a range of 31.40-32 baht/USdollar. Key factors to be monitored closely are Thai export data for January, the Bank of Thailand’s monthly economic report and the ongoing coronavirus situation, according to the Kasikorn Research Centre report.

Meanwhile, the US economic data to be released during the week include February consumer sentiment surveys, plus February durable goods orders, new home sales, pending home sales, personal spending-income, and PCE/Core PCE price indices, fourth quarter 2019 GDP report (second release) and December house price data, according to the report in The Nation.

Thai Baht on the slide over fears of spread of Coronavirus outside China | News by The Thaiger

USD v THB

Thai Baht on the slide over fears of spread of Coronavirus outside China | News by The Thaiger

POUND v THB

Thai Baht on the slide over fears of spread of Coronavirus outside China | News by The Thaiger

EURO v THB

 

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Economy

Thai stocks plummet nearly 4% in Monday SET trading

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Thai stocks plummet nearly 4% in Monday SET trading | The Thaiger

The Stock Exchange of Thailand finished yesterday at 1,435.56 points, a decrease of 59.5 points, or nearly 4% – that’s compared to Friday’s close on the SET. The daily trade volume for Monday was 76.431 billion baht, with an index high of 1,474.12 and a low of 1,435.56.

Asian bourses were hammered as confidence was inhibited by rising cases of the Covid-19 outbreak outside of China, with risk-averse sentiment sending gold prices to a seven-year high.

Krungsri Securities expected the SET Index to fall to between 1,475 and 1,480 points due to investors remaining at risk after the virus situation worsened and South Korea began tackling the situation at the highest level, according to The Nation.

The top ten stocks with the highest trade value today were CRC, Gulf, AOT, PTT, CPAll, BAM, KBANK, SCB, PTTEP, and Advanc.

Elsewhere in Asia, China’s Shanghai SE Composite Index closed at 3,031.23, down 8.44 points, or 0.3%, while the Shenzhen SE Component Index ended the day at 11,772.38, up 142.68 points, or 1.23%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng closed at 26,820.88, down 487.93 points, or 1.8%. South Korea’s Kospi ended at 2,079.04, down 83.80 points, or nearly 4%. Taiwan’s TaiEx closed at 11,534.87, down 151.48 points, or 1.3%. Japan’s Nikkei Index was closed yesterday.

Meanwhile, in better economic news, exports for January 2020 unexpectedly rose according to ministry figures. It’s the first rise in six months, and an increase of 3.35% from the exports 12 months earlier.

The customs-cleared export numbers were boosted by higher shipments of gold and oil-related products, accord to an update from the commerce ministry. Reuters economic writers had earlier forecast a fall of 3% in shipments for the first month for the year, against December’s drop of 1.28%. January’s export figures are not affected by the outbreak of a coronavirus..

SOURCE: The Nation

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Thai exports figures rise in January

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Thai exports figures rise in January | The Thaiger

Whilst there’s been plenty of economic challenges around for Thailand, including the high Thai baht and a levelling out of tourist arrivals, exports for January 2020 unexpectedly rose according to ministry figures. It’s the first rise in six months, and an increase of 3.35% from the exports 12 months earlier.

The customs-cleared export numbers have been boosted by higher shipments of gold and oil-related products, accord to an update from the commerce ministry.

Reuters had earlier forecast a fall of 3% in shipments for the first month for the year, against December’s drop of 1.28% . January’s export figures are not affected by the outbreak of a coronavirus..

Looking at imports for the same month, they fell 7.86% in January, compared to a year earlier, after rising 2.54% in December. The forecast by economists was for a decrease of 15.85% in imports during January.

During 2019, exports from Thailand declined 2.65%.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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