Ringgit closes lower versus US dollar ahead of Fed meeting

Malaysian ringgit notes of different denominations on top of US dollar notes in this file photo illustration  March 14, 2013. — Reuters pic
Malaysian ringgit notes of different denominations on top of US dollar notes in this file photo illustration March 14, 2013. — Reuters pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 20 — The ringgit slid against the US dollar in the week’s first trading day amid jitters ahead of the US Federal Reserve (US Fed) meeting which starts tomorrow.

At 6pm, the local note fell to 4.1905/1950 from 4.1700/1730 at last Friday’s close.

Bank Islam chief economist Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said investors would focus on the US Federal Open Market Committee’s tapering decision at the September 21-22 meeting.

“The anticipation is that the US Fed might want to reduce the pace of asset purchases programme, which currently stands at US$120 billion per month. Consequently, the value of the US dollar has gone up based on the US Dollar Index or DXY, which had increased to 93.394 points, higher by 0.21 per cent from last week’s closing,” he told Bernama.

As such, the ringgit and other emerging market currencies are expected to remain volatile this week.

Against a basket of major currencies, the ringgit closed mostly higher, except against the yen, where it fell to 3.8200/8241 from 3.7913/7943 at last Friday’s close.

The local note rose compared to the British pound at 5.7339/7400 from 5.7483/7525, increased vis-a-vis the Singapore dollar to 3.0979/1017 from 3.0985/1010 and appreciated to 4.9079/9132 versus the euro from 4.9135/9170 previously. — Bernama

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