Ringgit opens marginally lower against greenback as investors await 1Q FY2024 GDP announcement

KUALA LUMPUR — The ringgit opened marginally lower against the US dollar on Friday as investors await the announcement of gross domestic product (GDP) performance for the first quarter of 2024. The local note is expected to remain resilient in the immediate term.

This is following the performance of the US Dollar Index (DXY), which has been decreasing due to the US Federal Reserve’s decision not to hike interest rates, providing respite to markets and the economy.

At 9am, the ringgit was slightly down to 4.6850/6880 against the greenback from Thursday’s closing of 4.6810/6850.

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said the ringgit-US dollar rate could linger around RM4.6840 to RM4.6850 in the near term.

“The ringgit is expected to continue its positive trend, but could experience profit-taking activities intermittently. Today, the focus would be on the first quarter GDP announcement expected around noon,” he told Bernama.

He added that the bank is pencilling in a 4.0 per cent growth, slightly better than the advance estimates of 3.9 per cent. Thus far, the supply-side data has been supportive with all sectors expected to record better growth in the first three months of this year.

The ringgit traded easier against a basket of major currencies, except for the Japanese yen.

It appreciated versus the Japanese yen to 3.0136/0158 from 3.0264/0292 at yesterday’s close but weakened against the euro to 5.0893/0926 from 5.0882/0926 yesterday and traded easier vis-a-vis the British pound to 5.9331/9369 from Thursday’s 5.9299/9350.

The local note traded mixed against ASEAN currencies.

It strengthened against the Singapore dollar to  3.4791/4816 from 3.4813/4846 at Thursday’s close and  rose versus the Thai baht to 12.9188/9317 from 12.9503/9671.

The local note, however, slipped against the Philippine peso to 8.15/8.16 from 8.14/8.15 previously and inched down vis-a-vis the Indonesian rupiah to 294.1/294.5 from 293.9/294.3 yesterday. — BERNAMA