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Strong baht a mixed blessing

Thailand's improved current-account surplus a flip side of weak domestic demand

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Falling consumer demand has led to a jump in Thailand's current-account surplus.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- The Thai baht has been trending higher recently, lifted by an improved external balance due to a rapid increase in current-account surplus. At first glance, a strong baht may hint at robustness in the Thai economy, but it is also the result of slumping domestic demand.

After its monetary policy committee met on Feb. 8, the Bank of Thailand issued a statement saying: "Some appreciation of the baht against major trading partners' currencies ... might not be as beneficial to the ongoing economic recovery."

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