Ringgit likely to turn soft, revisit 4.70 level against US dollar next week

Publish date: Sun, 09 Jun 2024, 11:51 AM

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit is likely to trade softer against the US dollar next week, revisiting the RM4.70 level or lower, after the US non-farm payrolls (NFP) data released on Friday night came in stronger than expected, said Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid.

The above-expectation NFP increase would possibly push up the demand for the greenback, he said.

The immediate-term outlook for the ringgit was previously seen as constructive, with analysts expecting the local currency to hold under 4.70 to the US dollar.

However, the May NFP report, which showed 272,000 new jobs in May compared to the consensus projection of 182,000, has changed the perspective, he told Bernama.

"Markets will be digesting the new data released and prospective steps made by the United States, especially after central banks began to lower interest rates.

"They will be looking at the NFP alongside other economic data, which previously showed the US manufacturing sector's weak performance, US job openings report for April, US hiring report by private employers in May, and initial jobless claims," he said.

Mohd Afzanizam said markets would monitor closely the upcoming Federal Open Market Committee meeting scheduled on June 11-12 next week.

He further said that while the US Federal Reserve (Fed) is expected to keep the rate unchanged, the Fed's latest macroeconomic projection would be the main focus.

"In particular, the forecast for the Federal Funds Rate - whether they will stick to their game plan to cut the rates this year. This will be the guiding principle and will dictate market sentiment in the near term," he added.

On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the ringgit appreciated to 4.6900/6940 against the US dollar from 4.7050/7080 a week ago.

For the shortened trading week just ended, the ringgit was traded lower versus a basket of other major currencies.

The local note fell against the British pound to 6.0009/0060 from 5.9876/9914 on the previous Friday, eased versus the euro to 5.1079/1122 from 5.1035/1068 a week earlier, and slipped vis-a-vis the Japanese yen to 3.0163/0190 from 2.9901/9922.

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mixed against ASEAN currencies.

The local note was higher versus the Philippine peso at 8.01/8.02 compared with 8.03/8.05 a week earlier and appreciated against the Thai baht to 12.8465/8627 from 12.7860/7994 previously.

However, it slipped versus the Indonesian rupiah to 289.5/289.9 from 289.4/289.7 on Friday last week and fell vis-a-vis the Singapore dollar to 3.4872/4905 from 3.4803/4828.

  - Bernama

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