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  1. #1
    Banned Muadib's Avatar
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    Thai Stock Market takes a nose dive...

    Thai shares fall after domestic unrest intensifies - MarketWatch

    By MarketWatch
    TOKYO (MarketWatch) -- Shares in Thailand dropped sharply Monday, as the government cut it forecast for economic growth after 21 people were killed in the Thai capital over the weekend, marking the bloodiest political unrest in nearly two decades.

    Those supporting former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra on Monday reportedly paraded the bodies of dead protesters through the street of Bangkok.

    Agence France Presse reported a procession of cars, trucks and taxis carrying the anti-government "Red Shirt" protesters formed in the historic district of the city before moving though central areas. Saturday's clashes resulted in the death of 17 civilians, including a Japanese journalist, as well as four soldiers and left hundreds wounded.

    Several reports said that the current government of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva may call elections for October in an effort to ease tensions.

    Meanwhile, the Finance Ministry said the unrest could knock half a percentage point off Thailand's economic growth for this year, with the tourism industry, which accounts for 6.5% of gross domestic product, likely among the sectors to suffer most, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

    Shares were down across the board, with the Thai equities benchmark shedding 3.6% in late trading. Tourism-related issues got hit especially hard.

    Shares of Thai Airways International PCL (TARWF 0.41, +0.00, +0.82%) tumbled 13.6%, and Airports of Thailand PCL moved down 4.1%. Energy conglomerate PTT PCL (PETTF 8.35, +0.08, +0.94%) , the country's biggest listed firm, fell as much as 4.1%, as telecom carrier Shin Corp. (SHNZF 0.91, +0.01, +1.05%) dropped 0.9%.

    Financial stocks were also weaker in late trading, with Bangkok Bank off 5.3% and Krung Thai Bank plunging 7.2%.

    Bloody weekend's aftermath

    The protesters, known as Red Shirts because of the colorful garb they wear, have refused to leave the streets of the capital city until the government calls new elections.

    Abhisit agreed to hold an election in nine months, before his term is scheduled to end late in 2011. Abhisit is now considering calling elections for October, a senior member of his ruling Democrat party told Dow Jones Newswires on Monday.

    The death toll included Hiroyuki Muramoto, a Japanese television cameraman working for Reuters, the news agency confirmed in a statement.

    Japan's Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its Web site Sunday that it's asked the Thai government to probe Muramoto's death and to do all it could to help ensure the safety of Japanese nationals.

    The Thai premier's office said Monday terrorists had incited the deadly weekend clashes with the army.

    "We clearly found that terrorists used pro-democracy protesters to incite the unrest, hoping for total change in our country," Abhisit was cited as saying in a nationally televised address.

    Many analysts said that Thaksin, who enjoys support among the country's rural poor because of his populist economic policies, would defeat Abhisit in a new election, The Wall Street Journal reported.

    Thaksin was removed from power in a 2006 military coup and lives mainly in Dubai to avoid a conviction on corruption charges in Thailand, the Journal reported.

    But others in Thailand consider Thaksin a demagogue who wants to control the country to expand his own business interests, the report said.

    Abhisit, speaking Saturday night on television, expressed regret for those who were killed but rejected the demands of the demonstrators, according to news reports from the country.
    Give a man a match, and he'll be warm for a minute, but set him on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

  2. #2
    loob lor geezer
    Bangyai's Avatar
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    Pound on the up a bit too.

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
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    it must have rallied a bit
    down over 5% at lunchtime

  4. #4
    Banned Muadib's Avatar
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    Let's see how the baht holds up against other currencies after this last schlimazel...

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