KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit closed flat against the greenback today, dampened by external factors as markets await the US debt ceiling vote by the US Congress tomorrow.
At 6pm, the local currency stood at 4.6005/4.6045 against the US dollar from Monday’s close of 4.6030/4.6060.
Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Afzanizam Rashid said the ringgit is still generally weak, with the greenback going to as high as RM4.6173 before settling towards RM4.6100.
“Not much can be said about the ringgit at the moment as the focus is now on how soon the US debt limit conundrum can be resolved,” he told Bernama.
From the technical standpoint, he noted that the local currency is in an oversold condition, suggesting that further downside risks for the ringgit are limited.
For now, the US dollar/ringgit pair is slightly below the resistance level of RM4.6257, while the support level stood at RM4.5491.
“Foreign exchange markets are cautious about how the US politicians would decide given the faction among the Democrats, and the Republicans may not be so inclined to accommodate a swift decision,” he said.
At today’s close, the ringgit was mostly flat against a basket of major currencies.
It fell vis-a-vis the British pound to 5.7129/5.7179 from 5.6829/5.6866 at the close on Monday, almost flat against the euro at 4.9327/4.9369 from 4.9330/4.9363 and flat against the Japanese yen to 3.2821/3.2852 from 3.2820/3.2844 yesterday.
At the same time, the local currency was traded mostly higher against other Asean currencies.
It appreciated versus the Indonesian rupiah to 306.9/307.4 from yesterday’s close of 307.3/307.7, increased vis-a-vis the Thai baht to 13.2251/13.2427 from 13.2316/13.2463, and rose against the Philippine peso to 8.16/8.17 from 8.20/8.21 previously.
However, the ringgit was slightly lower at 3.4035/3.4070 against the Singapore dollar from 3.4016/3.4043 previously.