KUALA LUMPUR, NOV 23: The ringgit opened easier against the US dollar this morning as the retreated gains in oil prices weighed on investors’ sentiment, dealers said.
At 9.01 am, the local unit was traded at 4.4240/4290 against the greenback from 4.4170/4250 on Tuesday. A dealer said the oil prices slipped during the overnight trading with market players awaiting for a clear direction from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meeting.
It was reported that two OPEC’s members, Iran and Iraq, were not ready to say yes to an OPEC agreement on reducing crude oil output.
“This has sparked fresh worries in the market,” the dealer said.
On the home front, focus would be centred on Bank Negara Malaysia’s final monetary policy committee meeting for 2016, due later today, where it will decide whether to keep or change the overnight policy rate (OPR).
This will be the first policy meeting held by BNM since Donald Trump’s US presidential election victory.
The ringgit has been traded on the weak note, depreciating by more than 5%. Many experts and market players believe that the benchmark rate will be kept unchanged from its current rate due to concerns over pressure on the ringgit. On Sept 9, Bank Negara decided to maintain the OPR at 3.0% after cutting the rate by 25 basis points on July 13.
Against other major currencies, the local unit traded mostly higher. It rose against the yen to 3.9788/9851 from 3.9875/9955, strengthened versus the British pound to 5.4920/4986 from 5.5102/5220 and improved vis-a-vis the euro to 4.6974/7049 from 4.7023/7117 previously.
However, the ringgit depreciated against the Singapore dollar to 3.1048/1089 from 3.1042/1103 on yesterday.