Thai stocks rebound after Fed lifts interest rates by half point as expected 

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Thai stocks recovered following overseas markets on Thursday, after losses on Tuesday’s closing due to fears that the Federal Reserve would aggressively tighten steps to curb inflation.

The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) index rose nearly 15 points at the opening, regaining ground from broad sell-offs on Tuesday. The market was closed on Wednesday due to a local public holiday.

As widely expected, the Fed raised its benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points on Wednesday, the biggest rise in 22 years. 

The move was less hawkish than some had feared that the rate would be lifted by 75 basis points, prompting US stocks to rally after the Fed’s meeting.

Analysts at Krungsri Securities said that “although the market has priced-in a 50 bps hike, there is still uncertainty over the post-meeting statement, especially on further tightening.” 

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said policymakers were likely to approve 50-basis-point rises at upcoming policy meetings in June and July, with a reduction to its balance sheet in June.

Krungsri analysts projected the SET index to hover around 1,660 – 1,665. “Spiking oil prices to above US$108/bbl would also bolster sentiment,” they noted. 

However, the analysts warned that ongoing concerns about the slowing global economy amid the unresolved Russia-Ukraine war and inflationary pressures “could trigger intraday weakness.” 

As of the morning session, PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP) saw its shares rise by 3.70 per cent to 154 baht, driven by strong oil prices and refining margins. Coal miner Banpu Plc (BANPU) also gained 2.46 per cent to 12.50 baht on rising coal prices. 

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