KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit will likely trade higher next week, thanks to among others, the recovery in commodity prices, the US Federal Reserve’s unchanged interest rates stance, coupled with positive local developments. Affin Hwang Investment Bank Vice President/Head of Retail Research Datuk Dr Nazri Khan Adam Khan said the improved global economy had spurred momentum in the country, welcoming more foreign buyers for local stocks and the ringgit.
“Malaysia’s first half economy is growing at a respectable speed and expected to continue into the second half of the year. “Due to this, we are bullish that by year-end, the local note would be traded at 3.95-level from 4.27 currently,” he told Bernama. Nazri was quoting Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who said (at Invest Malaysia 2017) that Malaysia’s exports has breached the RM80 billion mark for the first time and that the capital market increased by nine per cent to a level of RM3.1 trillion in the first six months of this year.“In fact, in the equity market there were net inflows of RM11 billion in the first half of 2017, compared to RM3 billion of net outflows during the whole of 2016,” Najib was quoted as saying. The prime minister also said the International Monetary Fund has revised upward its forecast for Malaysia’s economy from 4.5% to 4.8% this year.
“The Malaysian ringgit rose by five per cent and was among the best performing currencies in the world from the weakest,” Nazri said. On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the ringgit was traded higher at 4.2760/2790 against the US dollar from 4.2820/2850 last week. However, the local note was traded lower against other major currencies, except the greenback. It declined versus the Singapore dollar to 3.1471/1514 from 3.1375/1410 last Friday and weakened against the yen to 3.8377/8418 from 3.8362/8406. The local note fell against the British pound to 5.6187/6239 from 5.5692/5744 and depreciated against the euro to 5.0106/0154 from 4.9868/9916.