Economic sentiment rising among consumers and investors

Investors and consumers are optimistic about Thailand’s economic prospects as the investor sentiment index reached optimistic levels and consumer confidence hit a nine-month high earlier in November.

The positive outlook has progressively turned the adverse effects on business caused by public health measures to contain the COVID-19 in the country. The tourism industry is also picking up from more relaxed measures as there are currently more long-term tourists travelling to Thailand.

Paiboon Nalinthrangkurn, Chairman of the Federation of the Thai Capital Market Organizations (FETCO), said that investors are confident in the Kingdom because domestic demand has been strong, COVID-19 vaccines are providing a light at the end of the tunnel, and the United States Federal Reserve’s monetary policy is favorable for the Thai economy.

The investor confidence index gauges how investors view the upcoming three-month period. The index reached 161.41, a surge of 161 percent over the previous month, breaking into the “very bullish” zone for the first time in two years.

In November, foreign investors poured money into the Thai stock market, making it the first month in 2020 in which foreign investors were net buyers. They drove the market index up by 17.9 percent from October.

Consumers are also feeling more buoyant. The University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce reported that the consumer confidence index rose for a second straight month in November.

University President Thanavath Phonvichai said that the prospects for economic recovery and higher prices for farm products such as rice, rubber, oil palm and livestock products helped raise consumer sentiment.

Government programs also helped, especially its co-payment plan that subsidizes 50 percent of food and goods purchased at small shops, and a tax rebate program covering certain consumer goods such as electronics and mobile phones.

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