| GEO World|
| Bangkok exchange, schools to reopen Monday|
| Updated at: 1729 PST, Sunday, May 23, 2010|
BANGKOK: Thousands of Thais launched a massive clean-up operation in Bangkok's charred commercial district on Sunday as the city prepared for the resumption of business after the worst riots in modern history.
Thailand's stock exchange and other financial markets will resume full-day trading on Monday, after being closed on Thursday and Friday following a wave of arson and street battles when the army dispersed thousands of anti-government protesters. "Our trading system and those of our members are ready to resume operations," Stock Exchange of Thailand President Patareeya Benjapolchai said in a statement.
She later told Reuters that she expected an inflow of foreign capital into Thai stocks as price-earnings ratios were the lowest among peer markets and export and energy stocks would be resilient.
"The political problems are not over and the possibility of new violence is something the market will be looking out for. The market will also catch up with the losses in equities worldwide last week due to the problems with Greek debt," said Kiatkong Decho, a strategist at CIMB Securities (Thailand).
Thai stocks were the darling of foreign investors earlier this year, with an estimated $1.8 billion flowing in from February until April 9, a day before violence broke out.
Now, the bourse has seen a net outflow of foreign capital in the year to date, to the tune of 218 million baht ($6.7 million), according to exchange data.
Government offices and schools are also scheduled to reopen on Monday, but a curfew in the city and 23 provinces was extended on Sunday for two more nights.