Ringgit Opens Lower Against USD, Market Awaits Q1 GDP Report


The ringgit opened slightly 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 currency is expected to remain resilient in the near term.

This also follows the performance of the US Dollar Index (DXY) declining following the decision of the Federal Reserve (Fed) not to raise interest rates and give the economy a break to be neutral.

At 9am, the ringgit eased slightly to 4.6850/6880 against the US dollar from Thursday's close of 4.6810/6580.

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd's chief economist, Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said the MYR/USD rate could last around RM4.6840 to RM4.6850 in the near term.

The ringgit is expected to continue its positive trend but may experience uncertainty due to intermittent profit-taking activities. Today, the focus will be on the first quarter GDP announcement which is expected to be published at midday.

He also said that the bank recorded a growth of 4.0% better than the previous estimate of 3.9%. So far, data on the supply side is supportive with all sectors expected to post better growth in the first three months of the year.

Meanwhile, the ringgit traded lower against a group of major currencies, except for the Japanese yen.

It gained against 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 against the British pound to 5.9331/9317 from 5.9299/9350 on Thursday.

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 against the Thai baht to 12.9188/9317 from 12.9503/9671.

The local currency, however, depreciated against the Philippine peso to 8.15/8.16 from 8.14/8.15 previously and fell against the Indonesian rupiah to 294.1/294.5 from 293.9/294.3 yesterday.