KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 26 ― The ringgit opened flat against the US dollar today as market sentiment was affected by heightened geopolitical risks in Ukraine and in anticipation of the first lift-off in the United States interest rate, an analyst said.

At 9am, the local note stood at 4.1890/1920 versus the greenback from 4.1890/1905 at yesterday’s close.

Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd chief economist Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in its latest forecast, shaved off global growth in 2022 by 0.5 percentage points to 4.4 per cent from the estimated 5.9 per cent growth in 2021.

“The main factor was the marked down in forecast for the US and China’s economy. Issues surrounding earlier removal of monetary policy accommodation in the US and zero Covid policy in China are some of the key drivers for slower global growth,” he told Bernama.

As such, he said the local note would continue to stage a narrow range trading, moving from RM4.18 to RM4.19 today.

The ringgit was traded mostly lower against a basket of other major currencies except the Singapore dollar, where it marginally improved to 3.1166/1190 from 3.1168/1184 at yesterday’s close.

The domestic unit was lower versus the euro at 4.7348/7382 compared to 4.7277/7294 yesterday, weakened against the British pound to 5.6593/6634 from 5.6464/6484 and fell vis-a-vis the Japanese yen to 3.6800/6830 from 3.6723/6739 previously. ― Bernama