1) Thai stock market overview
Thailand’s SET Index closed at 1,594.05 points, decreased 6.32 points or 0.39% with a trading value of 41 billion baht. The analyst stated that the Thai stock market edged lower amid low trading volume after the gloomy economic outlook, especially exports and higher oil price that could impact operating costs of corporate.
2) South Korea inflation drops to one-year low in March
Consumer inflation in South Korea hit a one-year low in March, official data revealed on Tuesday, coming in slightly below economists’ estimates.
The consumer price index rose 4.2% year on year in March, compared to 4.8% in February and a 4.3% increase predicted in a Reuters poll. That was the lowest annual increase since March of 2022.
According to Statistics Korea, the monthly increase in the index was 0.2%, following a 0.3% increase in the previous month.
The South Korean finance ministry and central bank forecast that inflation would continue to fall after supply disruptions for some materials were resolved and demand cooled as a result of aggressive interest-rate hikes throughout the world.
3) Thai exports projected to expand less than 1% in 2023
The Thai National Shippers’ Council warned on Tuesday that Thailand’s exports will likely decline further this year, with growth of less than 1% expected amid increasing challenges.
As export growth last year was exceptionally high, TNSC Chairman Chaichan Chareonsuk said that the council expected the shipments in the first quarter of 2023 to fall by as much as 10% year-over-year. The sector is expected to stay subdued into the second quarter, with a contraction of 5% projected, before regaining its pace thereafter as trade partner economies, such as China, the United States, and Europe, could further bounce back to growth during the second half of the year.
The council, however, maintained its projection of 1-2% growth in exports this year while waiting for new board members to revise the outlook.
4) German exports beat expectations with an expansion of 4% in Feb
German exports expanded 4% in February, higher than the market had expected and the biggest increase in 10 months, due to strong demand from the U.S. and China, according to the data released by the federal statistics office.
Exports rose 4.0% in February, beating forecasts for an increase by 1.6% from Reuters poll. On a monthly basis, exports rose 2.5%.
Outbound freight for the European largest economy made a significant recovery this year, compared to a contract of 6.1% MoM last December.
On a monthly basis, shipment to European Union countries is seen growing by 2.0%, while exports to the U.S.jumped 9.4% and 10.2% for shipment to China.
Meanwhile, imports rose by 4.6% when compared to January and also beat expectations for a 1.0% increase.
Additionally, the foreign trade balance showed a surplus of 16.0 billion euros in February.