Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Asia’s Strongest Currency Adds to Challenges Facing Thailand

  • Baht’s appreciation this year adds to gloomy export outlook
  • Period of mourning casting a shadow on domestic consumption
Thai Baht Banknotes As Baht Pares Gains For The Week
Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg
Updated on

Faced with a year-long mourning period for King Bhumibol Adulyadej that’s set to curb spending, Thailand’s economy also confronts a new challenge: a resurgent currency that may hurt exports just as the industry is showing some signs of recovery.

The prospect of an orderly royal succession has stoked a 1.7 percent appreciation in the baht against the dollar since the king’s death on Oct. 13 -- the biggest climb in an Asian currency basket tracked by Bloomberg. The baht has strengthened 3.2 percent this year. Exports rose for a second straight month in September, customs department data showed Wednesday, a rare back-to-back climb after declines for most of the past two years.