KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit opened higher against the US dollar today ahead of the US Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) data that will be released tomorrow.
Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Afzanizam Rashid said that with the US dollar experiencing a decline, the key data points to focus on are the US ISM index for the manufacturing sector and the nonfarm payroll (NFP) for July.
“It is expected that the ISM Index will show a slight decrease to 46.5 in July, down from 46 previously.
“Meanwhile, the NFP which is set to be released this Friday is projected to be at 184,000, lower than the previous figure of 209,000,” he told Bernama.
Afzanizam noted that the Reserve Bank of Australia is scheduled to announce its decision on the benchmark interest rate tomorrow, with markets anticipating a 25 basis-point hike.
“All in all, the Malaysian ringgit is forecasted to trade in the RM4.54-RM4.56 range against the US dollar throughout the week due to the latter’s weaker performance,” he said.
At 9am, the local note rose to 4.5455/4.5485 against the greenback compared with 4.5535/4.5565 at the close last Friday.
In the meantime, the local unit was traded mostly lower against a basket of major currencies.
It increased against the Japanese yen to 3.2265/3.2289 from 3.2691/3.2715 on Friday, but slid against the euro to 5.0105/5.0138 from 4.9966/4.9998, and also decreased vis-a-vis the British pound to 5.8446/5.8485 from 5.8362/5.8401 on Friday.
Conversely, the local note was traded mostly higher against other Asean currencies.
The ringgit was up versus the Singapore dollar to 3.4148/3.4176 from 3.4183/3.4208 at the close on Friday, increased against the Indonesian rupiah to 300.8/301.2 from 301.4/301.8 and stronger vis-a-vis the Philippine peso to 8.28/8.30 from 8.29/8.31 previously.
However, it declined against the Thai baht to 13.2878/13.3036 from 13.2058/13.2218 previously.