Ringgit opens easier against US dollar

KUALA LUMPUR – The ringgit opened marginally lower against the US dollar today as strong jobs data in the United States eased worries over a recession there, spurring demand for the greenback.

At 9 am, the local note eased to 4.4370/4450 versus the US dollar from last Friday’s closing rate of 4.4350/4400.

However, Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid told Bernama that “given that the ringgit is still oversold from a technical standpoint, further appreciation of ringgit against the greenback can be expected.”

“The current support level is at RM4.4254 and the ringgit might gravitate towards such a level against the greenback,” he added.

Malaysia’s first quarter 2023 gross domestic product (GDP) announcement on Friday will be closely watched, he said.

“We are projecting that the GDP growth might come in at 5.5 per cent. Such projection is premised on stronger private consumption as the labour market continues to recover,” he added.

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mostly lower against a basket of major currencies.

It was easier vis-a-vis the British pound at 5.6044/6145 versus 5.5908/5971 last Friday and fell against the euro to 4.8909/8997 from 4.8900/8955, but appreciated against the Japanese yen to  3.2884/2945 from 3.3050/3090 at the last close.

The local note traded mixed against Asean currencies.

It was marginally lower against the Singapore dollar at 3.3467/3532 compared with 3.3464/3507 at last Friday’s close and eased versus the Indonesian rupiah to 302.2/302.9 from 302.1/302.6 previously.

The local note rose vis-a-vis the Thai baht to 13.0924/1229 from 13.1446/1661 and  improved further against the Philippine peso to 8.01/8.03 from 8.02/8.03 – Bernama / pic Muhd Amin Naharul