Ringgit retreats on stronger dollar
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 21 — The ringgit retreated from recent gains to close easier against the US dollar today as favourable greenback sentiment curbed interest for regional currencies, a dealer said.
At 6pm, the local unit stood at 4.0760/0800 against the greenback from Wednesday’s 4.0710/0770.
OANDA Head of Trading Asia-Pacific, Stephen Innes, said there was a minor sell-off in the regional rates markets as higher yield in the US and Europe weighed on investors’ year-end trading decisions as they move to cover US dollar shorts ahead of Friday’s key US economic data releases.
These included the US November Personal Consumption Expenditure print, preliminary durable and capital goods orders for November, new home sales for November and the final Michigan Sentiment Survey.
“The issue at hand is that even a minor positive change in US dollar sentiment could trigger outsized moves in thin, year-end markets.
“So emerging market-Asia investors are erring on the side of caution heading into Friday, which is considered the last active trading day before we ring in 2018,” he told Bernama.
Meanwhile, the ringgit traded mostly lower against a basket of major currencies.
It depreciated against the Singapore dollar to 3.0287/0332 from 3.0247/0310 on Wednesday, weakened versus the British pound to 5.4525/4590 from 5.4515/4607 and eased against the euro to 4.8423/8474 from 4.8188/8264.
The local unit, however, rose vis-a-vis the yen to 3.5912/5957 from 3.5976/6035 yesterday after the Bank of Japan decided to kept its monetary policy and 10-year government bond yield target unchanged. — Bernama