Ringgit rises against US$ on renewed investor interest

Bank Negara Malaysia's international reserves rose by US$600mil to US$103.3bil as at July 15, 2019 from two weeks prior.

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit inched upwards against the US dollar, backed by renewed interest from foreign investors on the prospects of Malaysia's economy.  

At 9am, the ringgit was at 4.1760/1880 against the greenback from  4.1770/1800 at Monday's close.

A dealer said the rise in positive sentiment was attributed to a statement by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in London about the upbeat assessment on Malaysia’s economic potential made by investors in the United Kingdom.

The investors according to him, have shown a keen interest in investing in Malaysia. 

"UK has been an important trading and investment partner for Malaysia. This positive sentiment is not only shared by the UK but also the rest of global investors as they would need to look for a safer location to invest due to heightened trade tensions," he said. 

He added that the trade tension between the United States and China has started to leave an impact on various sectors especially technology and manufacturing.

Malaysia, being a neutral ground to do business said Dr Mahathir, could reap benefits from the trade tension between the two superpower. 

US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet at the G20 Summit in Osaka on June 28 and 29, with analysts hoping the meetup, would lead for a truce on the trade war between the two economic powerhouses. 

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mostly lower with other currencies. 

It was higher against the pound at 5.2355/2421 compared with 5.2576/2635 at yesterday's close but slipped versus the euro to 4.6871/6925 from 4.6828/6866. 

Vis-a-vis, it weakened against the yen at  3.8471/8518 from 3.8448/8486 yesterday and eased against the Singapore dollar to 3.0471/0506 from 3.0467/0493. - Bernama

Speculation over a policy rate decision following the US Federal Reserve's upcoming FOMC meeting is contributing to global market volatility.

Ambank research says in a note that it does not expect a rate cut in June but has factored ina  60% chance for a rate cu in July and a 90% chance for September.

"We believe the probability for a rate cut will rise should the potential incoming data turn weaker than expected besides ongoing noises like (1) escalating trade war; (2) fears on recessionary outlook; (3) softening domestic economy; (4) falling inflation; and (5) sentiments surrounding crude oil prices," it said.

The research house expects the ringgit to trade between its support level of 4.1658 and 4.1720 while its resistance is pegged at 4.1850 and 4.1885.

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