KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 30 — The ringgit ended lower today as investors returned to safe havens after the US Federal Reserve maintained its interest rate during its first meeting this year.

At 6pm, the ringgit was quoted at 4.0870/0910 against the US dollar compared with 4.0790/0820 recorded at yesterday’s close.

An analyst said that the decision to hold the interest rate was due to data which showed job gains remained solid, with inflation remaining below target while household spending has been rising at a moderate pace.

“However, the US Fed does not discount future global economic pressure and will continue to monitor incoming data, including global developments and muted inflation pressures,” she said.


On the domestic front, she said the local market is not currently attracting foreign investors due to lack of catalysts.

“Coupled with increasing worries surrounding the global market due to the fast spread of the 2019 novel Coronavirus, a stimulus is needed to strengthen the ringgit, to prevent it sliding further due to external pressure,” she said.

Against other major currencies, the ringgit was traded lower.


It slightly declined to 2.9999/9035 from 2.9979/9012 against the Singapore dollar, and depreciated vis-a-vis the Japanese yen to 3.7523/7570 from 3.7408/7446 on Wednesday.

The local currency also weakened against the euro to 4.5026/5083 from 4.4869/4918 and slipped against the British pound to 5.3192/3257 from 5.3076/3131 yesterday. — Bernama