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Overseas investors buy Thai bonds, optimistic that Covid-19 vaccine will revive tourism

Caitlin Ashworth

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Overseas investors buy Thai bonds, optimistic that Covid-19 vaccine will revive tourism | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Unsplash: Goh Rhy Yan
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With hopes that a Covid-19 vaccine will be the key to open Thailand’s doors back up to international tourism, overseas investors are putting down money into Thailand’s financial market.

Thai baht has strengthened by nearly 3% since the end of October, a top performing currency in Asia following the Indonesian rupiah, and it’s expected to strengthen even further over the next year if the coronavirus vaccine leads to an influx of tourism, according to Krung Thai Bank strategist Poon Panichpibool.

“Foreigners have been mainly buying the front-end of the Thai debt curve for exposure to baht gains.”

This month, foreign investors have purchased a net of $1.5 billion USD in Thai bonds, according to Bloomberg.

With Pfizer and BioNtech boasting about their vaccine’s success and potential to end the pandemic, the process of restarting foreign tourism could speed up. Thailand has already started discussions with China about establishing a quarantine-free travel corridor by January.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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47 Comments

47 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Ozo

    November 13, 2020 at 6:40 pm

    This entire article is propaganda.

    • Avatar

      clfeige

      November 14, 2020 at 10:52 am

      exactly right! increasing the money supply does has the opposite effect that this article claims and it doesnt make sense at any level. An inflow of foreign funds means that Baht would weaken.

  2. Avatar

    Khun plastic

    November 13, 2020 at 7:42 pm

    Hedge fund managers taking short term speculative positions on the Thai baht making everything more expensive for locals and visitors alike is just what the country needs at the moment.

  3. Avatar

    aa

    November 13, 2020 at 7:48 pm

    No one will take Bill Gates poison!!!

  4. Avatar

    Jesus Monroe

    November 13, 2020 at 8:06 pm

    they can buy all they like. Tourism will be a slow journey back to pre covid days because millions of people have lost jobs so no pay equals no play…..

  5. Avatar

    Issan John

    November 13, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    … but … but … but … what about all the experts here who said the baht was collapsing and foreign investors were all withdrawing their funds and the country was doomed because Pattaya’s bar girls were losing their jobs… surely they can’t be wrong ? Nooooh …..

    • Avatar

      Michael

      November 14, 2020 at 1:51 am

      Something strange is going on here.

      First the government destroyed the economy. Then suddenly foreign investors buy things for cheap.

      Are these foreign investors really foreign?

    • Avatar

      Khun plastic

      November 14, 2020 at 2:51 am

      Your average sin city tilac may not be very well educated formally but they are very street wise.
      Any bargirl worthy of the title will have overseas sponsors sending untraceable cash via Western Union.
      They will be fine as will moma and papa back in nakon nowhere.
      There will be no need for the parents to sell the hilux or cancel the satellite TV subscription.
      It’s the girls working at 7/11 and the staff cleaning hotels that will suffer greatest.

    • Avatar

      Joe

      November 14, 2020 at 9:41 am

      Probably the Chinese buying everything and then isaan John can serve them on his knees like the good little serf that he is.

    • Avatar

      Mike

      November 14, 2020 at 9:42 pm

      Citation needed

    • Avatar

      Patrick Kelly

      November 15, 2020 at 12:57 am

      Yes u are correct….everything is fine in Thailand. No suffering to be seen by those who live well and have all day to post on tgethaiger.com . Reminds me of the limousine liberals in the USA. Walk a step in their shoes & then get back to me.

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        November 15, 2020 at 11:03 am

        I never suggested everything was “fine” – simply that some comments made here have no connection with reality and are based in nothing more than how a few with an axe to grind would like things to be.

  6. Avatar

    Stone Cold Steve Austin

    November 13, 2020 at 9:46 pm

    Yes, buy those bonds. Maybe you will see it’s profit in 2025 when Thailand finally reopens the borders after extreme poverty, starvation and mass suicides have decimated at least half of the Thai population. Good Luck there.

    • Avatar

      James

      November 14, 2020 at 12:42 am

      Stone Cold

      But tourism is only about 15% of the economy and so 85% is still OK.

      It is the same for many counties in the world, it is not the end of the world.

      • Avatar

        Nipral

        November 14, 2020 at 9:27 am

        This is total B.S. !!! All sane investors keep away from Thai markets, including ficancial and property as well as Bath that is heavily shorted.
        With this phony government and probably a few next ones Thai economy will need centuries to recover.
        In addition its only industry -tourism- is dead.
        God save the King !!!

      • Avatar

        Nipral

        November 14, 2020 at 9:28 am

        Are you kidding or simply stupid ? LOL !!!!

        • Avatar

          James

          November 14, 2020 at 10:24 pm

          Nipral

          The economy of Thailand is dependent on exports, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). Thailand itself is a newly industrialized country, with a GDP of 16.316 trillion baht (US$505 billion) in 2018, the 8th largest economy of Asia.

          It seems like you are the fool.

      • Avatar

        Yan

        November 14, 2020 at 7:53 pm

        85% of the economy still ok? Why I have to wait for a new Toyota almost 3 months to get it produced than?

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          November 15, 2020 at 11:07 am

          Because there’s still a healthy demand?

          Sometimes the stupidity of some comments here surprises even me.

  7. Avatar

    Chrissy

    November 13, 2020 at 11:49 pm

    Government is to crack down on fake news, they are the culprits, disseminate false promises, information that all in Thailand is swinging partying times, beaches packed hotels full. Crime has esculated due to broken families, bankrupts, mo
    ney owed to thai banks is crazy high.

  8. Avatar

    Tony Grace

    November 14, 2020 at 12:29 am

    Whatever your are on can I have some I want to fly to the moon,with Thailand economy and the political unrest no one in there right mind would purchase these bonds if there are they are buying junk wate and see its there cousin’s in Beijing that is propping up there economy at the present what ever they they get and the thies will suffer the consequences when the Thai bath starts to become monopoly money.

  9. Avatar

    DR D

    November 14, 2020 at 1:04 am

    Do you really think opening the doors to the CCP makes and sense?
    Follow the Philippines example and kick out the chinese spys and soldiers before you become like Hong Kong.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      November 15, 2020 at 11:49 am

      Hong Kong is part of China, while Thailand isn’t.

      Do you think people in Hong Kong had any more political freedom during 100 years of British rule? The reality, if you take off the rose-tinted spectacles, is that they actually had far less and the British were far more draconian and far less tolerant of any dissention.

      And who do you think owns most of the USA’s ever increasing debt, and the West’s?

  10. Avatar

    Bobby m

    November 14, 2020 at 4:26 am

    Mmmmm, not rocket science is it. Who bought the bonds ??????

    Got to give some credit though (if you will forgive the pun) I didn’t think they had anybody bright enough to try this, but obviously the new finance man has some nous about him. Trouble is it’s been done before.

    Smoke and mirrors.

  11. Avatar

    SG666

    November 14, 2020 at 7:40 am

    Another stupid try to lure people in to invest in LOScam.

  12. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    November 14, 2020 at 10:36 am

    The Thai baht has gone up because the US dollar has gone down.
    The US dollar has gone down because the Democrats have gained power in the US.
    All left wing governments depress the currency in the country.
    As for investors buying bonds. They might be, but according to the Bangkok Post the 5th of August, the yearly trend now for a long time is that foreign investors are selling Thailand stocks.
    The net total sold is 800 billion Baht in the last seven years.
    It is not only the latest mismanagement that is depressing the economy.
    Go back to fishing and farming Thais.
    Your sneaky, cheats, and corrupt ways have become common knowledge.

    • Avatar

      chris

      November 14, 2020 at 11:03 am

      the dollar has gone down because democrats won? Tell me, can you think of a single Trump policy that had a funding mechanism? Trump has been spending 100 billion a month for 3 years. He’s the epitome of a borrow and spend president.

      Next,the value of the any currency is tied to the size of the money supply and if you are talking about US Dollars then you gotta include its use (percent of dollars used) as a reserve currency. Your understanding of it is little better than high school student who listens to his crazy uncle.

      Lastly, Thailand’s currency reserves are mostly in gold now and the dollar has very little to do baht appreciation. It’s about the gold price and inflation in Thailand. Not about the US dollar.

      • Avatar

        Toby Andrews

        November 14, 2020 at 11:57 am

        I could win money betting that a country’s currency goes down when the left wing party gains power. On the other hand the currency goes up when a right wing party gains power.
        What Trump did or did not do is not relevant.
        To put it simply, which you do not want to do, if one currency goes down another currency goes up.
        The dollar went down, the dollar is an important currency – the baht went up.

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          November 15, 2020 at 11:24 am

          More absolute tripe – this isn’t true as a general rule anywhere, and you only have to look at Europe or South America to see that it’s pure fantasy.

          You couldn’t “win money betting” on anything. Thailand threw you out because you didn’t have enough money to renew your visa to stay on in Pattaya so you had to scuttle off to Cambodia instead because that’s all you can afford.

          You came to Thailand when the baht was low and interest rates high, and when things changed you blamed Thailand for your own stupidity.

          Sour grapes at its worst, but you’re far from the only one.

        • Avatar

          Michael

          November 15, 2020 at 11:40 am

          Did you check the currency charts before saying this?
          The USD almost didn’t move after Biden defeated Trump.
          If you compare the exchange rate of the USD and EUR it moves every month 1 or 2 cents. But there is nothing I can see that supports your statement.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      November 15, 2020 at 11:12 am

      As usual, complete nonsense and pure fantasy.

      The Bangkok Post never said that on 5 August, nor did did tge currency changes you refer to even happen in the order you claim.

  13. Avatar

    harry1

    November 14, 2020 at 11:24 am

    very difficult to understand why the present thai baht is so strong,as the economy is showing no strength or upturn and reliant on tourism, yet the government want to embrace exports ? very mixed messages to investors

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      November 15, 2020 at 11:36 am

      The Thai economy is largely reliant on “exports”, NOT “tourism” or Western Union transfers to a few bar girls, despite what a handful of those commenting here would like to believe.

      The Thai economy has taken a severe hit from the loss of tourism, but a bigger hit from the loss of exports due to the global recession.

      All the facts are readily available, but they just don’t suit some of the bitter and twisted commenting here who like to see themselves as being responsible for contributing to Thailand’s economic success while all they’ve done is prop up a bar stool.

      • Avatar

        Khun plastic

        November 16, 2020 at 5:53 am

        The boon rawd brewery’s profits would have been significantly less if we’re not for the eforts of me and and many friends over the past few decades.

        I would not be suprised if i personally have paid more tax into the treasury through the tax on booze than several factory workers would pay in an entire life time.

        Even the mrs has said as much to me on many occasions and she is a thai not a wannabe one.

        you continually underestimate the financial contributions foreign visitors make to thailand.

    • Avatar

      Bobby m

      November 15, 2020 at 4:42 pm

      Hi Harry

      The Thai baht is exactly where the financial world wants it to be. The high value makes Thai exports expensive and unattractive. The world markets can see through the smoke and mirrors (unlike somebody else on this forum) of buying your own bonds to make investment look good. Their economy is in tatters because they refuse to manage an economy against a virus.

      Have a good day.

  14. Avatar

    Gosport

    November 14, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    It is surely the right time to buy, but, don’t buy poverty-stricken family’s property. It is immoral, it will come back to ghost you forever. I bought 10 Rai of Mango farm. Mango salad is a necessity for high tempered rioters. I am planning to buy coconut farms with some friends because of low export to European and USA. Its juice is savior for rioters and its shell is more powerful than water cannon.

    • Avatar

      Toby Andrews

      November 14, 2020 at 6:41 pm

      If you bought a coconut farm what would you do with the monkeys Gosport?
      I know train them to throw coconuts at the police in the Bangkok protests.
      Let us see if the police can catch them . . .

    • Avatar

      Khun plastic

      November 15, 2020 at 5:52 pm

      Make sure you exercise good due diligence when investing in the coconut futures market.

      Would suggest you insure the farm is not dependent on monkey labour or you may well have trouble selling your product on the international market.

      Btw I am not a financial advisor or coconut farm expert,just my 2 santang’s worth.

  15. Avatar

    Mike Frenchie

    November 14, 2020 at 2:15 pm

    This is all about the FED loosening the monetary policy by having almost doubled the size of its balance sheet (by printing digital dollars like never before).
    These FED dollars have been used to buy US Gov. bonds that have been used to finance social programmes (it is called moneytisation), economic stimulus, etc. – Europe has done the same.
    Thailand has printed nothing (or not much) and the stimulus is extremely small.
    So, traders are looking for a currency that is not exposed politically and where there is still an interest rate (Greek bonds – 2 years duration – are now below 0% – I know this is crazy).
    Bad luck, the THB is a good candidate… this will continue since the US will probably head for another couple of trillion USD stimulus very soon.

  16. Avatar

    Francis

    November 14, 2020 at 3:58 pm

    Well dream on…

    Devalue the Thai Bath and you may get investors attention. Who would in there right mind invest now, strong Bath and failing economy, not a good combination.

  17. Avatar

    Patrick Kelly

    November 15, 2020 at 1:01 am

    Strengthening currency in Thailand will not be good for tourism when it finally opens back up. Sticker shock will alter travel plans. Asia has many destinations that will be preferable.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      November 15, 2020 at 11:42 am

      Feel free to name any of those “many destinations that will be preferable” in Asia.

      Cambodia? Vietnam? Indonesia? All have very similar issues and very similar policies where tourism is concerned.

  18. Avatar

    Khun plastic

    November 16, 2020 at 4:47 am

    Nothing wrong with Malaysia,

    3 month visa on arrival.

    2nd home long term visa easily available to all if you want it.

    No 90 day reporting.

    Can just go and buy your own land and property if you want to.do not have to be resident tourists can do also.

    Only dual pricing I’ve ever encountered is on Penang funicular railway which may well have stopped by now due to huge local uproar about it.

    Stability in system (visa system has not been messed with for many years)

    Never encountered single issue of police looking for tea money.

    Few of my friends with Thai wife’s have moved to Penang or Langkawi and all report is fine, wife’s happy also,want some somtam just pop over the border too hatyai for the weekend.

    Multicultural society ,many different types of food available.

    Everybody speaks English,all officials will deal with you in English no problem.

    Plenty of prostitute’s available if you like that sort of entertainment.

    Langkawi duty free island, cheap booze ,fags and cars.

    I sent quite a few years kl based and mrs liked it also.

    That’s without thinking hard about it.

    • The Thaiger & The Nation

      The Thaiger & The Nation

      November 16, 2020 at 10:15 am

      Our only response, after living in the two countries, is that it’s Malaysia, not Thailand.

  19. Avatar

    Khun plastic

    November 16, 2020 at 1:35 pm

    Post is for the benefit of issan John the guru of all things Thai,
    See if he bites😁

  20. Avatar

    Alex

    November 16, 2020 at 5:46 pm

    A Covid-19 vaccin… Not in a million years! They can stick that rubbish into themselves, not me!

  21. Avatar

    brian mc

    November 17, 2020 at 10:26 pm

    Thai Bonds? it’ll never work. Aaah Miss Moneysatang, Hong Tong, shaken not stirred.

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Thailand. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Tourism

Former WTO director cautions against re-opening Thailand too quickly

Maya Taylor

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Former WTO director cautions against re-opening Thailand too quickly | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Bao Menglong on Unsplash

The former director general of the World Trade Organisation has issued a caution against Thailand throwing open its borders too early. Supachai Panitchpakdi says Covid-19 is still very much a threat, pointing to other countries that appear trapped in a cycle of easing restrictions, followed by renewed lockdowns. His comments come as England emerges from a national lockdown, only for many areas to find themselves subject to even tougher measures, at least until Christmas.

According to a Nation Thailand report, Supachai says the cycle of lockdown/open up/lockdown that’s being seen in many Western countries is not just damaging their economies, it’s also leading to more infections and deaths. He warns that re-opening Thailand’s borders too quickly could have long-term negative impacts for the Kingdom.

“Thailand should gradually open the country, because human resources are the most important factor. It takes about 20 to 30 years for human development, and if those people die, it will be very difficult to restore the lost human resources.”

Within Thailand there is a polarised view as to whether Thailand should be broadly re-opening its borders or not. Successive polls show that the Thai population is, generally, suspicious about re-opening too soon, especially whilst parts of the rest of the world are still trying to contain their infection rates. On the other hand Thailand’s tourism and hospitality industry has been decimated with millions unemployed.

Supachai’s comments come as the government has tentatively opened the borders to foreign tourists, albeit at a significant cost and inconvenience to those who might want to visit. There is both a long term STV, special tourist visa, and a modified general tourist visa for up to 60 days. In both cases there is currently a 14 day mandatory quarantine to be served and a number of other paperwork hurdles to overcome.

Supachai says Thailand’s economy is likely to shrink by 5 or 6% this year, a change from the previous forecast of 7 or 8%. He adds that he’s hopeful the economy and exports will recover next year, pointing out that if a quick recovery is seen in China and ASEAN nations, it will help Thai exports. He warns that an appreciating baht could threaten Thailand’s exports and that exporters will need to look at ways of increasing their competitive edge.

He has also called for a hike in interest rates, pointing out that the low rate of 0.5% is having a detrimental effect on people’s savings. Another fallout from the pandemic is an increase in household debt, with Supachai expressing concern that Thai people are getting into debt at a much younger age compared to the trend in other countries.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Thailand

Finance Minister says Thailand’s GDP will take 2 years to recover

The Thaiger

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Finance Minister says Thailand’s GDP will take 2 years to recover | The Thaiger

Thailand’s finance minister says the countrys GDP will take 2 years to recover the 9% it has lost since the Covid pandemic ravaged the economy. Arkhom Termpittayapaisith, the Finance Minister, says the economy would have expanded by 3% this year if it weren’t for the pandemic.

“The pandemic crisis will make the economy contract by around 6% in 2020, therefore there is a 9% gap that needs to be recuperated. If Thailand’s GDP growth could arrive at 4% in 2021 and 2022, this would propel the country’s economic growth momentum to return to a normal ratio.”

The National Economic and Social Development says Thailand’s GDP contracted by 6.4% year-on-year in the 3rd quarter, with a yearly economic contraction projected to be 6%. Previously, it was predicted to contract by 7.5%, however, since the global economy is projected to contract by 3.5% and the global trade is expected to decline by 11%, the number has been updated.

The seasonal adjustment saw the economy expand by 6.5% quarter on quarter from the 2nd quarter, with it contracting by 6.7% in the first 9 months. However, the NESDC’s projection doesn’t account for the impact from political conflicts or a 2nd wave of outbreaks.

Such political conflicts as the protests against the monarchy have seen some authorities, such as the Chief ASEAN economist, saying it won’t help Thailand’s weak economic recovery. But Krisada says the Thai economy is expected to recover gradually, with a possibility of vaccine use and the global economic recovery helping to push forward the recovery next year.

Arkhom says the government reportedly has 30% fiscal space left in its 2021 budget, to help cushion the economic crisis. That percentage is about 980 billion baht worth of capital, which excludes the remaining sum of the 1 trillion baht loan decree.

As for the 2022 budget, he says it is still being designed to support economic growth through public investments in infrastructure and energy, with some projects relying more heavily on help from the private sector.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Business

Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht’s strength

The Thaiger

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Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht’s strength | The Thaiger

The Bank of Thailand has moved forward measures, originally meant to begin early 2021, but most of which will now take effect from end of this month. The end result is that the new rules will make it easier for Thais to shuffle money overseas and invest in foreign assets. It will also make is easier for Thai citizens to hold foreign currency in local banks. The new rules will also require the registration of local and overseas bond investors.

“Following the U.S. elections and positive news on Covid-19 vaccine development, investors have turned toward investing in emerging markets, including Thailand. The situation has resulted in strengthening the baht quickly and can impact economic recovery.”

“The registration of bond investors will allow close monitoring of investor’s behaviours and thereby enable the implementation of targeted measures in a timely manner.”

Last week the Bank of Thailand assessed that the Thai baht’s recent rapid gains could affect the country’s “fragile” economic recovery. The Thai government has called on the central bank to do its best to use what tools it has at its disposal to restrain the baht to protect exports.

Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at ANZ Banking Group, says that he central bank also will continue to resort to direct intervention in foreign-exchange markets.

“The issue here is that local investors have a very strong home bias. Making it easier to invest overseas may not actually encourage them to do so.”

The Thai baht has been the 2nd best performer in Asia this month after foreign investors turned net buyers of almost $2.4 billion of bonds and stocks as appetite returns for riskier emerging-market assets amid a weak dollar, according to Bloomberg.

The Thai baht had recently rallied 8.8% from this year’s low in April, hitting a 10 month high last week.

SOURCE: Bloomberg

This morning, Thai time…

Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht's strength | News by The Thaiger

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