KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — CIMB Group chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Razak warned those he described as “power people” today against issuing stupid remarks amid the continuing decline in the value of the ringgit, which has now plunged to levels unseen since the 1997 Asian Economic Crisis.
In an Instagram post, Nazir, who is also the brother to prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, posted a picture of a tipped-over bronze bull, with a caption asking if it was “dead or wounded,” adding that China would be the determinant factor.
“Dead or wounded? China will determine, but a new normal (of relative values) will prevail for most emerging markets,” the caption read.
“Accept & adjust quickly. Meanwhile, capital is super sensitive; bad news & bad signs amplified, so “power” people must avoid saying stupid things,” he added.
Nazir has been taking to the popular photo-sharing site to voice his opinions about various current issues, including the governance of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).
Yesterday, the ringgit fell to a record low when it went beyond the 3 per Singapore dollar mark for the first time in its trading history.
Today, local news site The Star reported that the ringgit fell further into uncharted territory against the Singapore dollar, slumping to a low of 3.0303 to the dollar at 8.12am before recovering to trade at 3.0194 at 8.45am.
The sharp drop has been attributed to China’s weak currency, which is feared to be a sign of its faltering economy, but was not unique to Malaysia as the drop was also observed in other commodities-driven countries including Indonesia and Australia.
Bloomberg reported today, however, that emerging markets stocks rose from the lowest level since 2009, rebounding after a selloff that shaved US$2.7 trillion (RM11.4 trillion) from global equity markets yesterday.
Bloomberg noted, however, that Chinese shares in Shanghai sank for a fourth day.
Fears of a China-led global economic slowdown also drove Wall Street to its steepest one-day drop in nearly four years on Friday and left the Dow industrials more than 10 per cent below a May record. A 0.6 per cent fall in S&P 500 mini futures suggested sentiment remained weak.