• Bt2.1-trillion motorway plans likely to have multiplier effect on economy — THE Department of Highways yesterday revealed its new Bt2.1-trillion 20-year plan to develop the motorway network, expecting these investments to have a multiplier effect by more than two times worth Bt5.7 trillion for the economy. (Bangkok Post, 24/11/15)
  • Farm unemployment bucks generally positive trend — The National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) reported the unemployment rate was 0.92% of the total workforce, up from 0.84% in the same period last year and 0.88% in this year’s second quarter. Employment in the agricultural sector was down by 3.8% in the period. Employment in the non-agricultural sector grew 1.7% year-on-year following expansion of the service sector, logistics, construction, hotels and restaurants. A drought from June-August and lower water supply from dams sapped farmers’ productivity. (Bangkok Post, 24/11/15)
  • Exports down for 10th month — Exports plunged for a tenth straight month in October, with the blame again falling on soft demand from the weak global economy, plunging oil prices and volatile foreign exchange. (Bangkok Post, 25/11/15)
  • Full-year view revised higher on bullish Q4 — The Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) is optimistic that the economy will expand by 3% this year, a slightly higher projection than the previous forecast of 2.8%, says director-general Krisada Chinavicharana. (Bangkok Post, 27/11/15)

  • Eurozone economic activity peaks at four-year high — Business activity in the eurozone grew at its fastest pace in four-and-a-half years. The eurozone purchasing managers’ index hit 54.4 this month, up from 53.9 in October, and comfortably above the 50 mark that indicates economic expansion. The PMI, a monthly survey of about 5,000 eurozone businesses, takes account of factors including new orders, employment and production. (Financial Times, 23/11/15)
  • German GDP: No surprises, but a drag from trade — No shocks from the final reading of German GDP, which has been confirmed to have grown by 0.3 per cent in the third quarter, as predicted in an earlier estimate this month. On an annual basis, price-adjusted GDP rose by 1.8 per cent, or 1.7 per cent when calendar-adjusted. (Financial Times, 24/11/15)
  • Free-trade groups ‘rivalry heating up’ — Thai and other leaders of 16 Asean and Asia Pacific countries have pledged to conclude negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) free trade and investment agreement by the end of next year. They hope to create a new “high-impact” economic grouping that will rival the US-led Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), which currently excludes Thailand. (The Nation, 23/11/15)
  • Bank of Japan minutes a lesson in patience — The minutes from the Bank of Japan’s October 30 fizzer of a meeting have just been released and, in short, it seems the central bank appeared more keen to maintain stability rather than shake things up. Leading into that meeting, expectations were high that the BoJ would expand the size of its asset purchase programme from its current pace of Y80tn ($650bn) a year. But policymakers held fire, and did so again at another meeting this month. (Financial Times, 26/11/15)
  • Philippine economy grows 6% in Q3 — The Filipino economy did not grow as much as expected in the third quarter, but did expand at its fastest rate so far this year. GDP grew 6 per cent year-on-year, versus expectations of 6.3 per cent. However this was more than the 5.8 per cent growth recorded for the second quarter and 5 per cent in the first. (Financial Times, 26/11/15)
  • China to boost consumer services to shore up growth — China will strengthen support for consumer services to upgrade the consumption structure and bolster economic growth, according to a guideline issued by the State Council. Several key sectors, including health care, senior citizen care, tourism, sports, hotels and catering, as well as education and training services will be prioritized. (Xinhua News, 23/11/15)

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