Ringgit strengthens against US$ on renewed buying interest

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit extended its upbeat momentum to open higher versus the US dollar today, supported by renewed buying interest in the currency and improved sentiment on China’s continued opening for international travel, said an analyst.

At 9 am, the ringgit climbed to 4.2755/2805 against the greenback from Friday’s close of 4.2830/2875.

The market resumed trading today after taking a break on Jan 23 and 24 for the Chinese New Year (CNY) holidays.

SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes believed that some of the investors would likely remain cautious on the possible sharp rise in Covid-19 cases in China post-CNY.

“However, amidst the returning Chinese consumer impulse and the continued opening up of Chinese international travel, I expect the ringgit to remain on solid footing despite any short term hiccups,” he told Bernama.

Meanwhile, OANDA senior market analyst Edward Moya said the United States’ flash Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) showed a steady improvement across both the manufacturing and service sectors, but also ended a seven-month sequence of moderating input price rises.

“The PMIs are positive for the growth outlook, but raises some concern that inflation may prove to be harder to bring down as the burdens of faster increases in costs are weighing on private sector firms,” he said.

Meanwhile, the ringgit traded mostly higher against a basket of major currencies.

The local note rose marginally against the Singapore dollar at 3.2385/2428 from 3.2386/2425 and improved to 5.2687/2749 against the British pound from 5.2861/2916 at Friday’s close.

However, the ringgit weakened versus the euro to 4.6543/6598 from 4.6393/6442 but appreciated vis-a-vis the Japanese yen to 3.2800/2841 from 3.3073/3111 previously. – Bernama

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