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Baht Falls From This Week’s High After Best Rally in Two Weeks

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March 9 (Bloomberg) -- Thailand’s baht retreated from this week’s high on speculation investors took advantage of yesterday’s biggest gain in two weeks to buy dollars at a more favorable exchange rate.

The currency strengthened in early trade before Greece announced the final outcome of its debt-swap agreement with creditors. A U.S. government report today may show companies added 210,000 jobs in February, compared with 243,000 the previous month, according to the median forecast of economists in a Bloomberg News survey.

“Good news from Greece was already priced in and investors are probably taking profits before the weekend,” said Kozo Hasegawa, a trader at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. in Bangkok. “Good data out of the U.S. may further improve risk sentiment in the market.”

The baht fell 0.2 percent today and this week to 30.59 per dollar as of 3:21 p.m. in Bangkok, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The currency may trade between 30.40 and 30.65 next week, Hasegawa said. One-month implied volatility, a measure of currency swings used to price options, was unchanged at 6.5250 percent.

Thailand’s SET index of shares fell 0.1 percent this week to 1,164.19. The gauge has more than doubled since reaching a low of 408.78 in March 2009 at the height of the subprime crisis. The currency has rallied 19 percent in the same period.

The yield on the 3.25 percent government bonds due June 2017 rose two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 3.42 percent this week, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The rate was unchanged today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Yumi Teso in Bangkok at yteso1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sandy Hendry at shendry@bloomberg.net.

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