CNA – The Malaysian ringgit slipped further to a fresh 24-year low against the US dollar at the opening yesterday, in line with lower oil prices as more investors shifted towards safe-haven assets.
At 9.05am, the local currency slid to 4.5200/5220 against the greenback from 4.5070/5085 at yesterday’s close.
ActivTrades trader Dyogenes Rodrigues Diniz said the United States (US) consumer price index (CPI) data showed higher-than-expected inflation at 8.3 per cent, versus the forecast of 8.1 per cent.
“The higher reading left investors wondering about how big an interest rate hike we could see at the next Federal Reserve meeting on September 21.
Prior to the release of the CPI data, the market was predicting a 0.50 to 0.75 increase, but now many have raised their forecast to a 0.75 per cent to one per cent hike,” he told Bernama. Diniz said the markets had responded strongly to the data, resulting in another strong appreciation of the US dollar against other currencies.
On Tuesday, Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz was reported as saying that Malaysia is not experiencing an economic crisis just because the ringgit is trading at a low level against the greenback.
He explained that the ringgit’s performance should be viewed holistically, not just in comparison with the US dollar, as the local note also strengthened against other currencies.