Ringgit opens slightly lower against US dollar

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit opened slightly lower against the US dollar this morning as the lack of fresh catalysts saw investors holding their greenback positions, dealers said.

At 9am, the local currency was quoted at 4.1310/1380 versus the US dollar, compared with 4.1300/1340 at Tuesday’s close.

A dealer, however, believes the US dollar will come under pressure as the benchmark federal funds rate was left unchanged at 0.00-0.25% as expected, adding that growing hopes for a Covid-19 vaccine could improve investor’s appetite for riskier currencies.

The US Federal Reserve (US Fed) chair, Jerome Powell, said the central bank plans to keep interest rates near zero through at least 2023 in an attempt to revive the economy and the labour market.

The US Fed concluded its two-day policy meeting on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mostly lower against other major currencies.

It depreciated versus the Singapore dollar to 3.0366/0429 from 3.0352/0386 on Tuesday, decreased against the Japanese yen to 3.9320/9398 from 3.9062/9111, and weakened against the British pound to 5.3422/3529 from 5.3256/3324.

The domestic unit, however, rose vis-a-vis the euro to 4.8643/8742 from 4.9060/9124 previously.

The local market was closed yesterday for the Malaysia Day holiday.