1) Thai stock market overview
Thailand’s SET Index closed at 1,528.77 points, increased 10.85 points or 0.71% with a trading value of 46 billion baht. The analyst stated that the Thai stock market edged higher as the market hoped for a conclusion in forming the new government within this week along with expectations of the Chinese government to deliver more stimulus packages to boost its lower-than-expected GDP growth. Meanwhile, the market also expected to see an end of rate-hike cycle from the Fed.
2) Economists say it is too soon for Federal Reserve to declare victory over inflation
Despite the U.S. consumer price index and producer price index for June coming in weaker than anticipated last week, economists warned that it is too early for the Federal Reserve to declare victory over inflation.
While the Federal Reserve held interest rates steady in June, the markets anticipate a rate increase from the central bank in July. According to the CME Fed tracker, 96% of traders currently predict that the Fed will increase rates by another 25 basis points, to a range of 5.25% to 5.50%.
The Federal Reserve has long stated that 2% inflation is its goal; the 3% CPI reading from last week is the closest it has been to this goal in years.
Based on the most recent data, economists are increasingly optimistic about the prospect of a soft landing, which is great news given the good trends being seen in many industries. However, they think it’s too soon to call it a done deal because, as the Fed has said, much of their work has not yet shown up in the market.
3) India could replace China as major contributor to Asean region’s tourism sector
India could soon displace China as a major contributor to the tourism industry in South-east Asia, as the world’s second-largest economy faces a slower-than-expected reopening.
For the past decade or so, Chinese tourists have been a major contributor to the Asean region’s tourism industry. However, official data from four Southeast Asian countries reveals a weak recovery, with at least a 60% drop in the number of Chinese visitors in May compared to the same month in 2019.
Although fewer than China in absolute terms, the number of Indian visitors in Thailand so far this year is only about 14% lower than it was in 2019. For comparison, just 1.38 million Chinese tourists visited Thailand in 2023, whereas 6.28 million came during the first half of 2019.
Indians outnumbered Chinese tourists in Singapore in May, and in the same month, approximately 63,000 Indians traveled to Indonesia, while just slightly more than 64,000 Chinese made the trip.