First rise of Thai Industries Sentiment Index in 7 months

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BANGKOK, June 18 — The Thai Industries Sentiment Index (TISI) in May showed its first rise in seven months, while a related indicator, motorcycle installment plan loans, have started to pick up.

Suphan Mongkolsuthee, chair of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), said TISI rose to 85.1 in May compared with 84.0 in April as operators saw positive signs in the economy. along with the alleviation of some Thai political problems. The index is based on orders, sales, production and operating results.

In May, about 148,000 automobiles were produced. The figure fell by 36 per cent year-on-year but rose by 16.94 per cent from the amount registered in April. Automobile sales should increase significantly by October when economic confidence improves and money in the economy increases.

The FTI predicts the Thai economy will grow by more than 2.5  per cent or nearly 3 per cent this year. Earlier it expected the economy to shrink by 1 per cent.

Mitsuji Konoshita, executive of Group Lease Plc, said the economic stimulation measures of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) including payment for pledged rice were supporting the grass roots economy which formed the main group of its clients.

He said his company’s net profit  in the second half of this year should grow by 20-30 per cent, even though its net profit dropped 10-15 per cent in the first quarter.

Mr Konoshita expects loans for both motorcycle installment plans and microfinance to grow.