Ringgit hits record low vs US dollar since Asian Financial Crisis

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit continued to weaken against the US dollar, breaching the 4.53 level which is by far the lowest since the Asian Financial Crisis (AFC), said an analyst.

At 6 pm, the local currency dipped to 4.5340/5365 against the greenback from 4.5265/5285 at Wednesday’s close.

The analyst said with no new catalyst to boost the ringgit’s attraction, investors are keeping their focus mainly on the greenback and other safe-haven assets.

"On the other hand, although the ringgit is trading lower against the US dollar, Malaysia’s economy remains intact and is not experiencing a crisis, as stated by Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz recently,” she told Bernama.

Another expert, ActivTrades’s market analyst Alexander Londono said the firmer US dollar was due to the rising inflation expectations.

He also said that the drop in the Bursa Malaysia is also weighing on the local currency.

At the close, the FBM KLCI eased by 1.13 points to 1,467.31 today from Wednesday's close of 1,468.44.

"On the external front, if the retail sales from the United States show a better-than-expected reading, then the US dollar could keep rising and the ringgit-US dollar could keep falling as a result,” said Londono.

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

The ringgit increased against the British pound at 5.2214/2242 from 5.2331/2354 at Wednesday’s close and rose versus the Singapore dollar to 3.2238/2261 from 3.2252/2268 previously.

However, the local note went down against the euro to 4.5317/5342 from 4.5306/5326 yesterday and declined against the Japanese yen to 3.1647/1666 from 3.1616/1635 on Wednesday. - Bernama

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