Ringgit Maintains Positive Momentum, Strong Against Asean Regional Currencies


The ringgit opened higher in early trading on Wednesday against the US dollar amid weaker US labor market data.

At exactly 9am, the ringgit strengthened to 4.6960 against the US dollar from where it closed at 4.7005 on Tuesday.

The latest JOLTS Job Openings report shows that demand for labor is declining. Job openings for April fell to 8.059 million from 8.355 million in the previous month.

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd's Chief Economist, Afzanizam Rashid said the latest labor market data will give the Federal Reserve (Fed) further impetus and may set its monetary stance towards appropriate policies to sustain economic growth.

Basically, there is evidence of improvement and the Fed needs to shift its focus to another target, namely the pursuit of maximum employment.

Accordingly, the US Dollar Index (DXY) remained below 105 points for four consecutive days. The ringgit is expected to continue to be well supported around the RM4.70 level.

The ringgit traded easier against a basket of major currencies but rose against the Japanese yen to 3.0248/0289 from 3.0293/0311 at Tuesday's close.

The local unit fell against the euro to 5.1111/5.1177 from 5.1099/5.1126 and eased against the British pound to 5.9991/6.0068 from 5.9988/6.0020 previously.

The ringgit was mostly higher against Asean peers but depreciated against the Singapore dollar to 3.4878/4925 from 3.4868/3.4889 yesterday.

It rose against the Thai baht to 12.8124/12.8333 from 12.8443/12.8568 at Tuesday's close, rose against the Indonesian rupiah to 289.4/290.0 from 289.7/290.0 previously and it rose against the Philippine peso to 7.98/8.00 from 8.00/8.01.