Thailand settles higher for second day; Vietnam down
BANGKOK, Dec 26 — Thai shares closed higher for a second straight session today in thin trading as strong November trade data briefly invigorated the market in an otherwise quiet day.
The benchmark stock index, which ended up 0.35 per cent, or 5.25 points, rose as much as 0.47 per cent after data showed customs-cleared exports rose 10.2 per cent in November. A Reuters poll had forecast a 1.55 per cent rise.
The percentage gain was the highest for a month since February, and paired with a 3 per cent rise in imports produced a trade surplus of US$1.54 billion (RM6.8 billion), triple the expectation.
Gains were broad-based, with Airports of Thailand leading the rise by adding 1.6 per cent.
Convenience store chain CP All PCL climbed 1.2 per cent, pushing the consumer sector higher, while the country’s biggest bank by market value, Siam Commercial Bank, added 1.4 per cent.
Vietnam shares erased early gains of up to 0.2 per cent to finish 0.3 per cent lower as consumer staples declined.
Vietnam Dairy Products JSC and Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp lost 1.2 per cent and 1.5 per cent, respectively.
The energy sector was dragged down by a 1.5 per cent fall in Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp shares.
Stock markets in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines were closed for Christmas. — Reuters