KUALA LUMPUR, March 21 — The ringgit maintained its positive momentum against the US dollar in early trade today, as continued global uncertainties prompted more investors to shift towards emerging currencies, including the ringgit, a dealer said.
At 9.20am, the local note rose to 4.4710/4750 versus the greenback from Monday’s closing rate of 4.4830/4885.
ActivTrades trader Dyogenes Rodrigues Diniz said uncertainty lingered amid negotiations for the purchase of Credit Suisse by Switzerland’s biggest bank UBS.
“The crisis of confidence in the banking system is being cautiously monitored by all market players around the world, while Switzerland makes a historic intervention to facilitate the transaction between UBS and Credit Suisse.
“In Malaysia, the trade balance data came in higher than expected, signalling a possible appreciation of the ringgit against the greenback. In the United States, an interest rate decision is expected on Wednesday and this will be very closely watched by all investors as it has the potential to be a major market-moving event,” he told Bernama.
Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mostly lower against a basket of major currencies.
The local note strengthened against the Japanese yen to 3.4101/4137 from 3.4177/4224 at Monday’s close, but declined versus the British pound to 5.4868/4917 from 5.4657/4724 previously and slipped vis-a-vis the euro to 4.7916/7959 from 4.7843/7901.
However, the ringgit was traded mostly higher against Asean currencies.
The local currency appreciated versus the Singapore dollar to 3.3406/3440 from 3.3408/3454 at the previous close, firmed against the Thai baht to 13.1380/1560 from 13.1408/1631 yesterday, and rose vis-a-vis the Indonesian rupiah to 291.00/291.40 from 291.80/292.30, but it eased versus the Philippine peso to 8.23/8.24 from 8.20/8.21 previously.