Thai Airways slumps almost 14%, Chinese airline stocks higher

Thai Airways’ shares slumped 13.6% yesterday – its biggest one-day fall in six months – after reports that 21 people were killed and hundreds more injured in anti-government protests at the weekend.

Several countries, including Russia, South Korea and China have issued advisories against travel to Bangkok following the riots, according to Bloomberg. Thailand’s Fiscal Policy Office has warned Thai tourism arrivals may fall 20% this year, with a 4% reduction in flights expected during this week’s New Year holiday period.

Meanwhile, Chinese airline stocks rose strongly in early trade, but settled with modest gains, led by Hainan Airlines (+6.7%), China Eastern (+1.5%) and Air China (+0.5%), as China Southern (+0.5%) reported a return to profitability in 2009 and foreshadowed an improvement in 2010 on the back of a stronger local economy. The market is also speculating that yuan appreciation will also boost airline earnings. See related report: China Southern Airlines returns to the black, favourable outlook

Asia Pacific selected airlines daily share price movements (% change): 12-Apr-2010