The KR Household Economic Condition Index (KR-ECI) in
September 2020 stood at 38.1, improved slightly over that reported for August
2020, suggesting that Thai households were more optimistic
about their living conditions. The 3-month Expected KR-ECI also increased to
39.7 in alignment with the gradual recovery seen in economic activities after
the government lifted lockdown restrictions and introduced a series of measures
to stimulate domestic tourism and purchasing power. However, the KR-ECI and
3-month Expected KR-ECI were still below 50 and pre-COVID-19 levels, suggesting
that economic conditions and living conditions of households have not returned
to normalcy yet.
of the KR-ECI also show that Thai households were more concerned about their
purchasing power in September 2020 and over the following three months due to
the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on income and employment. In addition,
they were still anxious about debt repayments after the expiration of the first
phase of debt relief measures (July 2020) as some households were not able to
adapt to the situation or increase their income so that their ability to repay
their debts was affected. Another survey conducted by KResearch shows that more
than 50% of respondents intended to participate in phase 2 of the Bank of
Thailand’s relief measure for retail borrowers, especially debt restructuring
programs (such as reducing the minimum rate of interest).
that the resurgence of COVID-19 in many countries continues to generate
uncertainties over the Thai economic recovery. Such uncertainties have dampened
employment, purchasing power and debt servicing ability of Thai households.
However, the government’s economic stimulus measures, especially those aimed at
stimulating domestic purchasing power, will likely help support household
spending during the final quarter of 2020.
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