Thailand’s Economic Recovery Delayed By Covid-19 Outbreak

Thailand’s economic recovery is set to be delayed by a surge in Covid-19 cases and renewed lockdown measures in April and May.

Thailand’s economy has been gradually recovering from the pandemic shock in H120, on the back of fiscal stimulus and a relaxing of domestic mobility restrictions, growing 0.2% q-o-q in Q121. Indeed, we expected the economic output to only recover to its pre-pandemic level by 2022, following the 6.1% contraction in 2020.

However, with the economy facing an aggressive rise in Covid-19 cases once again (see chart below) and policymakers tightening restrictions on activities, we believe the recovery will face a setback. Officials have forced the closure of restaurants, hotels and entertainment venues, with the severity of measures differing among provinces and varying in lengths of duration.

While not as severe as measures imposed a year prior, the disruptions will send economic activity into contraction once again … Read the rest

Happy 125th, Dow Jones

U.S. stocks rose slightly on Wednesday as shares tied to the economic reopening supported the broader market once again.

The Dow Jones Industrials finished the day but 10.26 points over the breakeven point to 34,322.72.

The S&P 500 added 7.86 points to 4,195.99.

The NASDAQ gained 80.82 points to 13,738.

Shares of companies linked to a recovering economy gained. Carnival Corp rose 2.8%. Royal Caribbean jumped 3.9% and brought its gain this week to over 11% after the cruise line operator received approval to begin test cruises with volunteer passengers.

Shares of Ford rose more than 8% after the automobile giant said it is increasing its investment in electric vehicles to $30 billion through 2025.

The optimism on the economy comes as U.S. average daily COVID cases fall below 25,000 and as nearly half the U.S. population has received at least one vaccination dose.

Bitcoin continued its comeback, helping risk … Read the rest

Stocks Stagger by Close

U.S. stocks wiped out earlier gains and finished Tuesday’s session lower as the market struggled for a direction.

The Dow Jones Industrials shed earlier gains and lost 81.52 points to end Tuesday at 34,312.46.

The S&P 500 fell 8.92 points to 4,188.13, dragged by the energy sector.

The NASDAQ ducked four points to 13,657.17.

Big Tech shares Apple and Netflix both erased an earlier advance and dipped into negative territory. Amazon shares came under pressure after Washington, D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine said he’s suing the e-commerce giant on antitrust grounds.

He alleged Amazon’s practices have unfairly raised prices for consumers and suppressed innovation. But shares eventually rose 0.4% on the day.

Airlines and cruise lines provided the broader market with some support. United Airlines jumped 1.5% after the carrier said yields on domestic leisure tickets purchased this month topped 2019 levels amid the reopening. Boeing also gained 1.4%. Norwegian … Read the rest

Cryptocurrencies Attempt To Rebound After Plunging Over The Weekend

The wild ride for cryptocurrencies continues.

The cryptocurrency market edged higher in pre-market trading Monday (May 24) after plunging over the weekend. The price of Bitcoin was near $37,000 U.S. early on Monday after plummeting to less than $32,000 U.S. on Sunday.

Bitcoin was up 8% at $36,764.83 U.S. Monday morning, according to CoinDesk, which put the market capitalization of the world’s largest digital coin at $686 billion U.S..

Ethereum, the world’s second largest cryptocurrency, rose from less than $1,800 U.S. on Sunday to over $2,300 U.S. in pre-market trading on Monday. Ethereum has risen 14% in less than 24 hours and now has a market capitalization of around $266 billion U.S., according to CoinDesk.

Cryptocurrency Dogecoin also showed signs of recovery, with its price rising from 24 cents U.S. on Sunday to 33 cents U.S. on Monday.

Last week’s broad sell-off in cryptocurrencies came after authorities in China and … Read the rest

How the “four M’s” underpin a bright Asian future

For a look into the future of the global economy, and where the power is shifting, consider technology developments in both China and India.,

In a mere decade, China’s e-commerce market has grown from less than 1% of global sales, into the world’s largest market in 2016, representing more than 40% of transactions by value. Platforms such as Alibaba and JD.com reach nearly a billion eager shoppers, in a market three times bigger than the US’. 

Meanwhile, India’s adoption of mobile technologies is surging at an astonishing rate as Reliance Jio – which became India’s dominant tech firm virtually overnight – brings fast connections to India’s 1.3 billion people. Even as Covid-19 spread, Google and Facebook separately invested billions in this telecoms company (a highly unusual step for rival tech giants) amid projections it would hit 500 million subscribers by 2023. 

Events in the world’s two most populous nations capture … Read the rest

Markets Mixed at Friday Finish

The S&P 500 erased earlier gains and finished Friday near the flatline as the tech sector came under pressure again amid another drop in bitcoin price.

The Dow Jones Industrials came down from its daily highs, but still surged 123.69 points to close Friday at 34,207.84, thanks to a jump in Boeing shares.

The S&P 500 dropped 3.26 points to 4,155.86.

The NASDAQ tumbled 64.75 points to 13,470.99.

For the week, the S&P 500 fell 0.4% to register for its first back-to-back weekly losses since February. The blue-chip Dow dipped 0.5% on the week, while the NASDAQ eked out a 0.3% gain this week, breaking a four-week losing streak.

Shares of Nvidia jumped 2.6% after the chip giant announced a 4-for-1 stock split. The shares increased even though the split adds no actual value to the stock.

Ford, which said it has 20,000 reservations for its new electric F-150 pickup, … Read the rest

TSX Retreats on Day, Hikes on Week

Stocks in Toronto tottered much of the day Friday, en route to the first long weekend of the summer, before wallowing into the red, as real-estate and consumer stocks both moved lower.

The TSX let go of gains and forfeited 15.65 points to end Friday at 19,527.30,, even so, hanging onto a gain on the week of 162 points, or 0.83%.

The Canadian dollar dipped 0.14 cents to 82.88 cents U.S.

Markets in Canada will be shuttered for Victoria Day.

Real-estate proved the biggest anchor around the necks of the market, with units of Dream Industrial REIT sinking 41 cents, or 2.9%, to $13.73, while First Service Corporation sliding $5.31, or 2.7%, to $192.78.

Among consumer staples, George Weston lost $1.85, or 1.6%, to $117.51, while Alimentation Couche-Tard shares dropping 48 cents, or 1.1%, to $43.79.

Among resource stocks, Turquoise Hill skidded 50 cents, or 2.4%, to $20.23, while First … Read the rest

Thailand close to completing the world’s biggest floating hydro-solar farm

About 144,417 solar panels are being installed on a reservoir in the northeast province of Ubon Ratchathani, where workers are completing the last of seven solar farms covering 300 acres (121 hectares) of water.

The state-run Electricity Generation Authority of Thailand (EGAT) is touting the pilot project as one of the world’s largest hybrid hydro-solar power ventures and aims to replicate it at eight more dams over the next 16 years.

Highlights

  • Thailand is creating one the world’s biggest floating hydro-solar hybrid projects on the surface of a dam, which is close to completion.
  • The state-run Electricity Generation Authority of Thailand (EGAT) aims to replicate this at eight more dams over the next 16 years.
  • Head of the initiative Chanin Saleechan has said this could generate 2,725 megawatts of electricity, once all the projects are completed in every dam.
  • Thailand is aiming to draw 35% of its energy from non-fossil
Read the rest

Shortened Week Ahead in Canada

Monday

U.S.

Featured Earnings

Nordson Corporation (NASDAQ:NDSN) (Q3) EPS estimate of $1.62, compared to $1.58 in the prior-year quarter.

Agora Inc. (NASDAQ:API) (Q1) EPS estimate for loss of one cent, compared to loss of $1.20 in the prior-year quarter.

America’s Car Mart (NASDAQ:CRMT) (Q4) EPS estimate of $2.69, compared to $1.35 in the prior-year quarter.

Canada

Canadian markets are shuttered for Victoria Day

Tuesday

U.S.

Economic Lookahead

CoreLogic Case-Shiller national home price index (March)

Consumer confidence index (May)

New home sales (April)

Featured Earnings

Intuit Inc. (NASDAQ: INTU) (Q4) EPS estimate of $5.39, compared to $4.18 in the prior-year quarter.

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) (Q2) EPS estimate of 82 cents, compared to 71 cents in the prior-year quarter.

AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE:AZO) (Q3) EPS estimate of $18.62, compared to $14.39 in the prior-year quarter.

Canada

Featured Earnings

Allegiant Gold (T.AUAU) (Q4) EPS estimate for loss of one cent, compared to … Read the rest

Thai banking system remained resilient amid new wave of COVID-19

According to Ms. Suwannee Jatsadasak, Senior Director, Bank of Thailand, reported on the Thai banking system’s performance in the first quarter of 2021 that the Thai banking system remained resilient with high levels of capital fund, loan loss provision and liquidity to accommodate loan demand and weather increasing economic uncertainties arising from the new wave of COVID-19.

Credit assistance measures, coupled with revisions to rules on loan classification and provisioning helped alleviate the deterioration of bank loan quality. Meanwhile, banking system’s profitability declined from the same period last year as a result of lower interest income from loans.

Details are as follows:

Capital Fund of the Thai banking system was at 3,017.2 billion baht, equivalent to capital adequacy ratio (BIS ratio) of 20.0%. Loan loss provision remained high at 823.4 billion baht with NPL coverage ratio of 149.7%. Liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) registered at 186.5%.

In the first quarter of … Read the rest