KUALA LUMPUR, May 7 — The ringgit further eased against the US dollar today as investors stayed on the sidelines following Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) announcement on the overnight policy rate (OPR), dealers said.
At 6pm, the ringgit was lower at 4.1470/1500 compared with 4.1460/1490 at yesterday’s close.
As widely expected, BNM today cut the OPR by 25 basis points to 3.00 per cent.
In a statement, the central bank said the adjustment to the OPR was intended to preserve the degree of monetary accommodativeness.
“This is consistent with the monetary policy stance of supporting a steady growth path amid price stability,” it said.
BNM made the last change to the OPR rate on Jan 25, 2018, when it increased the rate by 25 basis points to 3.25 per cent.
MIDF Research said BNM’s move to lower the key interest rate today would result in improvements to investment and domestic consumption activities in 2019, particularly in the second half of the year.
Meanwhile, a dealer said the falling oil prices also weighed down on the ringgit. Brent crude was trading 0.8 per cent lower at US$70.68 (RM293.53) per barrel as at the time of writing.
The ringgit was traded mostly lower against other major currencies.
It fell against the Singapore dollar to 3.0446/0472 from 3.0412/0440 yesterday and dropped against the yen to 3.7506/7540 from 3.7429/7466.
The local currency, however, improved versus the British pound to 5.4288/4340 from 5.4317/4373 but slipped against the euro to 4.6455/6505 from 4.6406/6444. — Bernama