Despite political uncertainty after a military junta assumed control of the country, Thailand stocks and related exchange traded funds have surged, but some are concerned about rising valuations.
The iShares MSCI Thailand Capped ETF (NYSEArca: THD) is up 20.6% year-to-date.
“Developments following Thailand’s recent coup shows that this is not a typical Putsch, as it is pro-economic growth and investor friendly,” Daiwa Capital Markets said, Reuters reports.
The military government, who has declared a “war on vice,” is targeting so-called grey industries, or illegal operations, that fuel the country’s underground economy, according to Trebizond Investments.
Consumer confidence is rising as the junta pushes toward a “return to happiness.” The gross domestic product expanded 1% the second quarter over the previous period. The Thai baht currency has also strengthened to its highest level since November.
Additionally, a tepid monsoon season in India has allowed Thailand to reclaim its status as the largest rice exporter, which could help the country offload rice stores.
The latest rally in Thai equities came after the National Council for Peace and Order increased payments of about 92 billion baht, or $2.9 billion, in rice subsidies owed to farmers, and the government planned to speed up infrastructure spending, according to Bangkok Post. [Thailand ETF Stampedes Back to Bull Market]
Nevertheless, potential investors should be aware of some hurdles. For instance, while the economy is expanding, the recovery has been slow going. New governmental policies will take months to implement.