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BOT boss warns of possible stormy seas ahead

Feb 22. 2018
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By The Nation

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Bank of Thailand governor Veerathai Santiprabhob has warned there is a risk of bigger market corrections ahead, saying global rate hikes could adversely affect Thai firms.

He was speaking on Thursday at a seminar hosted by S&P Global Ratings and TRIS Rating Co.

Market correction over the past month indicates investors are more worried about the risk of faster interest-rate hikes and rising inflation than previously thought, Veerathai said.

There is a risk of greater market correction ahead, possibly arising from a mismatch of market expectations and complexity in the way economic factors interact, he warned, citing a recent sharp fall in global stocks.

The US Federal Reserve might raise its policy rates faster, which would lead to higher interest rates globally.

Firms that depend too much on foreign borrowing would be adversely affected by global rate hikes, Veerathai said.

Thailand, however, doesn’t need to mimic US rate hikes, he said, because of its ample liquidity owing to a large current-account surplus, which last year represented 10.8 per cent of GDP.

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