KUALA LUMPUR, April 7 — The ringgit’s movements next week are expected to be influenced by external factors, especially economic data from the US, dealers said.
FXTM Global Head of Currency Strategy and Market Research, Jameel Ahmad, said the key event would be the latest Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) minutes and the US inflation reading, which were scheduled for release next week.
“The FOMC minutes will be seen by traders as a high-risk announcement, and the ringgit could fluctuate, in either direction, depending on the tone of the Federal Reserve.
“It has appeared recently that the US central bank has softened its stance that there could be four US interest rate rises in 2018 and confirmation of this would be seen as a risk for the US dollar,” he said.
Meanwhile, OANDA Head of Trading Asia-Pacific, Stephen Innes, said the recent release of US jobs report, which came in less-than-expected, should keep the market more disposed to maintain a long ringgit position despite the coming elections.
“With regards to the elections, which would continue to favour a long ringgit through the event, there is no real political risk,” he told Bernama.
Innes said, however, with the Bank Negara Malaysia likely in a little rush to raise interest rates soon due to lower inflation. Hence, I expect the ringgit will be trade between 3.8550 and 3.8850 levels for next week,” he said.
For the week just-ended, the ringgit was traded between 3.8600 and 3.8680, mainly influenced by concerns over a US-China trade war, released of US non-farm payroll data and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s announcement on the dissolution of the Dewan Rakyat.
On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the local note finished easier against the greenback at 3.8680/8720 from 3.8620/8650 last week.
However, the ringgit traded firmer against a basket of major currencies.
It strengthened against the yen to 3.6035/6076 from 3.6369/6404 last Friday and appreciated against the euro to 4.7352/7413 from 4.7603/7659.
The ringgit rose vis-a-vis the British pound to 5.4195/4266 from 5.4246/4307 last week and advanced against the Singapore dollar to 2.9345/9387 versus 2.9476/9511 previously. — Bernama