BANGKOK, March 21 Thai stocks trimmed losses on
Friday with tourism-related and consumer shares gaining ground,
but political concerns remained even after the country's
Constitutional Court nullified a Feb. 2 general election.
Even though the nullification may offer more ways out of the
current political impasse, protests against the court decision
by the pro-government, red-shirt United Front for Democracy
against Dictatorship could temper positive news from the ruling,
said a strategist with broker Phillip Securities.
The Thai SET index was down 0.1 percent at 1,359.92
by midday after declining to 1,355.76 earlier in the session.
The court ruling, which came just before the midday break,
briefly lured short-term buyers into the market.
Tourism-related and consumer stocks pared losses, with
airport operator Airports of Thailand up 0.3 percent
and retailer CP All higher 1.2 percent.
The Thai index is set to end the week lower by 1 percent,
making it one of the Southeast Asia's worst performers.
Indonesia's main index was down 0.1 percent. Shares
with attractive dividend yields led gainers, including
Perusahaan Gas Negara and Matahari Putra Prima
The index is on track for a weekly loss of almost 4 percent
after Thursday's selloff as concerns about a
sooner-than-expected rise in U.S. interest rates triggered
selling across the region.
Other Southeast Asian markets staged a mild rebound from the
previous session after Wall Street shook off concerns about
Federal Reserve policy, with the Singapore benchmark index
bouncing off a near two-month low hit on Thursday.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
Change at 0612 GMT
Market Current Prev Close Pct Move
TR SE Asia Index* 399.72 399.36 +0.09
Singapore 3087.76 3057.20 +1.00
Kuala Lumpur 1819.75 1818.17 +0.09
Bangkok 1359.02 1361.47 -0.11
Jakarta 4694.32 4698.97 -0.10
Manila 6414.98 6417.35 -0.04
Ho Chi Minh 606.17 600.26 +0.98
* The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a
highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia,
Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
(Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)