February Consumer confidence index rises to five-month high


BANGKOK, March 2 – Thailand’s Consumer Confidence Index rose in February to its highest level in five months following positive public sentiment, however public consumption is likely to slow until midway into the second quarter of 2012, according to a survey released on Friday.

The survey conducted by the Thai Chamber of Commerce University (UTCC)’s  Center for Economic and Business Forecasting  showed the confidence index stood at 75.5 points in February, up from 74.2 points in the previous month.

The survey attributed the rise to the Constitution Court’s ruling which cleared the way for the government’s two executive decrees on flood management, paving the way for the government’s post-flood rehabilitation designed to spur the country’s economic growth.

The centre forecast that public consumption is likely to slow until the middle of second quarter due to lingering reaction to last year’s devastating flood as well as soaring costs of living and global economic volatility.

The consumer confidence and consumption index is likely to pick up late in the second quarter if the government speeds up implementation of its economic stimulus policy and other post-flood rehabilitation measures.

In addition, the center noted that the rise of energy prices and costs of living should be on par with public income which has not yet fully recovered in the first half of this year, and that will support Thailand’s growth to reach a target of 5-6 per cent.