Industry sentiment plunges to 10-month low

Industry sentiment plunges to 10-month low

A quiet day at Mae Sot’s Rim Moei market, beside the older of the two Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridges across the Moei River. (File photo by Pongpet Mekloy)
A quiet day at Mae Sot’s Rim Moei market, beside the older of the two Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridges across the Moei River. (File photo by Pongpet Mekloy)

The Thai Industries Sentiment Index dropped in August to 92.8 points, the lowest in 10 months, on business concerns about people's lower purchasing power and a bearish sentiment on exports, the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) reported on Tuesday.

The index fell sharply from 93.5 points in July. The median figure is 100.

FTI chairman Supant Mongkolsuthree said Thai buyers were being more careful with their spending. At the same time, widespread heavy rain in northern and northeastern provinces in August had flooded many roads and normal logistics routes were disrupted. 

Moreover, the baht remained the strongest currency in Southeast Asia and the export sector suffered from this factor.

The US-China trade war continued and although China had recently reduced import duties on 16 US products, global business confidence had yet to recover a positive outlook.

"As a result, Thai business sector still suffered from aggressive and tough competition," Mr Supant said.

The FTI forecast is for the industries sentiment index to rise to 102.9 over the next three months, up from the previous projection of 102.3 points, on business expectations of higher purchasing power and demand in the fourth quarter stemming from promotions and product launches, including the government’s stimulus package to boost local consumption and spending.

The August survey drew on opinions from 1,207 companies in 45 industrial sectors.


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