Thai bourse index likely to fluctuate heavily next year

The Stock Exchange of Thailand

The Stock Exchange of Thailand’s composite index will remain in an upward trend next year although it will fluctuate greatly in the first and second quarters, according to a leading securities analyst.

Sukij Udomsirikul , first vice president of Siam City Securities Co’s Research Division, projected the index would peak at 880 points and plunge to the lowest at 540 points in 2010. It is likely to stay at an average of 750 million.

The Map Ta Phut case, if persistent for more than one year, would make profits earned by major listed firms such as the country’s oil and gas conglomerate PTT and Siam Cement reduce by 10-20 per cent.

The Supreme Administrative Court on December 2 upheld the earlier suspension of 65 factories and industrial projects in Thailand’s largest manufacturing centre – the Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate in the eastern province of Rayong — but 11 projects designed to minimise environmental impact problems have received permission to continue operations.

The Administrative Court on Wednesday has cleared Siam Yamato Steel (SYS) to resume operations after earlier being suspended as part of the group of 65 projects affected by the court order.

Still, prices of the two stocks had already dropped to an extent that absorbed the negative impacts, Mr Sukij He allowed the political conflicts would heighten particularly in January and February when the court’s ruling on the seizure of assets worth 76 billion bahtk of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra would take place.

Mr Sukij said the US dollar is forecast to strengthen further due to the US economic recovery. The situation would lead to an increase in the policy interest rate and other interest rates offered by banks, he added.

The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) composite index gained 5.40 points or 0.75 per cent to close on Wednesday at 729.80, and the bluechip SET-50 index was up 4.68 points to 516.13. (TNA)