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Thailand's manufacturing growth drops further in June

BANGKOK, July 3 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's manufacturing sector continued to expand but saw a further eased pace of growth in June due to slower new orders and a decline in business confidence, a survey showed on Monday.

The country's manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) was recorded at 53.2 last month, down from 58.2 in May and the record high rate of 60.4 in April, indicating a strong but lower growth momentum, according to S&P Global.

A PMI reading above 50 indicates expansion in the manufacturing sector, while a reading below reflects contraction.

According to the survey, the June figure marked a solid expansion for the eighteenth consecutive month as sustained demand growth supported higher production while export orders showed positive signs of improvement.

Better supply conditions have kept price pressures under control with below-average cost inflation, resulting in the softest rise in selling prices in nearly two years, which could support further moderations in consumer price inflation in the following months, said Jingyi Pan, Economics Associate Director at S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Despite that, "overall business confidence continued to deteriorate with lingering concerns over the economic and political outlook affecting Thai manufacturers' optimism," Pan said.