Ringgit falls against US dollar at close

THE ringgit ended lower against the US dollar today despite higher oil prices, said an analyst.

At 6.01pm, the local currency eased to 4.647/6500 against the greenback from Friday’s close of 4.636/6390.

SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes said in the wake of last week’s UK risk asset meltdown, markets are not functioning well and demand for risky Asia assets is mute.

“Surprisingly the ringgit is not stronger as oil is up 2%, the OPEC may cut production to put a price floor under oil prices.

“Exporter retention of US dollar and Employees’ Provident Fund overseas investment remain the primary drag outside of the hawkish Federal Reserve (Fed),” he told Bernama.

Meanwhile, Bank Islam Bhd chief economist Firdaos Rosli said the ringgit trading this week will be contingent upon the upcoming release of the US non-farm payrolls report and the ongoing speeches by Fed officials.

He added that the market will also focus on key takeaways from the UK’s Conservative Party conference, Purchasing Managers’ Index survey data for the world’s major economies and the OPEC meeting.

“The ringgit movement will also take cues from the upcoming Budget 2023 announcement on Oct 7 and developments surrounding an early 15th General Election.

“This will indicate inflation expectations in the coming months and signal Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) appetite for another 25 basis points Overnight Policy Rate hike in early November,” he said.

Hence, Firdaos expects the ringgit to trade moderately between the RM4.644 and RM4.655 range this week.

Today, BNM governor Tan Sri Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus said there was no need to hoard or frontload the US dollar purchases at a time when the ringgit’s current depreciation is due to the strength of the US dollar.

She also said Corporate Malaysia can help in maintaining orderly market conditions by taking actions which do not exacerbate the situation.

The governor said BNM will ensure that the country’s onshore foreign exchange market remains liquid and businesses can be assured that all their foreign currency needs can be efficiently fulfilled.

Meanwhile, the ringgit traded mixed against a basket of major currencies.

The local note slipped against the British pound to 5.1963/1996 from 5.1728/1762 at Friday’s close and eased slightly versus the Singapore dollar to 3.2354/2379 from 3.2343/2368.

It appreciated against the Japanese yen at 3.2015/2040 from 3.2103/2126 and rose vis-a-vis the euro to 4.5355/5384 from 4.5428/5458 last Friday. — BERNAMA / Pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL