Analysts predict upturn for SET, pick 5 Thai stocks for 2021
Most analysts and fund managers expect the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) Index to hit 1,559 this year, up 110 points from 1,449 at the end of last year.
The findings come from a recent survey conducted by the Investment Analyst Association (IAA).
Those surveyed also expect the SET to range between a high of 1,631 and a low of 1,338, and forecast this year's earning-per-share (EPS) growth at 40.77 per cent.
Thai stocks remain attractive this year as the index would not the face high volatility of last year, said IAA secretary-general Sombat Narawutthichai.
Positive sentiment for the SET came from central banks' quantitative easing, foreign fund flows, the global economic recovery and low policy rate, he said, while downside pressure came from the Covid-19 outbreak, and political and economic developments both domestic and overseas.
"However, many analysts said they are not worried about the Covid-19 situation, as many countries have started vaccinating [their populations]," he said.
"Meanwhile, they [analysts] expected Thailand's gross domestic product this year to stand at 3.74 per cent."
Analysts and fund managers urged the Thai government to launch more stimulus measures, accelerate infrastructure investment, promote domestic tourism, and mitigate the Covid-19 impact on businesses.
They also picked five stocks with good fundamentals and EPS growth:
1. Advanced Info Service (ADVANC), which they said had benefited from work-from-home trends and would generate dividends at about 4.11 per cent.
2. Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (BDMS) – profits at Thailand's largest private hospital group are likely to recover, while it would benefit from the country’s ageing society.
3. CP All (CPALL), which had benefited from government measures to stimulate consumption.
4. Kasikorn Bank (KBANK), which had benefited from the high interest margin as well as strong risk management.
5. PTT Global Chemical (PTTGC), which should benefit from the economic recovery and its cost advantage.
"Analysts also advised investors to keep 12.17 per cent in cash and invest 16.30 per cent in fixed income funds, 28.43 per cent in Thai stocks, 28.39 per cent in foreign stocks, 7.85 per cent in gold, and 6.85 per cent in property funds or Real Estate Investment Trusts [REITs]," he added.