Consumer confidence at 5-month high over reopening

Consumer confidence at 5-month high over reopening

Consumer confidence rose for a second straight month in October, hitting a five-month high, thanks to an easing of coronavirus curbs and a larger reopening of the country's troubled tourism sector, a survey showed on Thursday.

The consumer index of the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce increased to 43.9 in October from 41.4 in the previous month, the university said in a statement.  

"Consumers had some hope that the economy would recover in future," university president Thanavath Phonvichai told a briefing.

Sentiment was also lifted by government stimulus measures amid weak consumption, he said, adding the government would need to inject at least 500 billion baht ($15 billion) next year to get economic growth of more than 4%.

This year, the economy might grow by 1% to 1.5%, with an expected contraction of 3% to 4% in the third quarter due to the curbs, Mr Thanavath said. Last year, the economy shrank 6.1%.

A separate survey by the Federation of Thai Capital Market Organizations (FETCO) showed its investor confidence index in October rising by 18.2% to a record high of 168.69.

The index, which projects confidence in the market over the next three months, moved to the "very bullish" zone, with tourism revival seen as the most supportive factor, the FETCO said in a statement.

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