Ringgit opens higher on declining US dollar index

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit opened higher today as the US dollar Index (DXY) declined after the US Federal Reserve (Fed) provided a clear signal on its monetary stance for next year. 

At 9 am, the ringgit improved to 4.6610/6670 against the US dollar from Wednesday's close of 4.7035/7085 . 

The DXY edged lower by 0.96 per cent to 102.869 points. 

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist and social finance head Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) has decided to maintain the Fed Fund Rate (FFR) at 5.25 per cent to 5.50 per cent but signaled more interest rate cuts between 2024 and 2026.

"The Fed is signalling rate cuts are going to happen in 2024. The main questions now are the quantum of the rate reduction, and how fast they are willing to shift their stance," he told Bernama.

The two-year US Treasury yield was down by 27 basis points to close at 4.46 per cent while the 10-year note yielded 4.04 per cent, declining by 16 basis points.

Mohd Afzanizam said the local note is set to appreciate further today with the Fed's clear signal.

"The ringgit has already breached its immediate support level of RM4.6611 to the greenback. The next support level is situated at RM4.5778," he said. 

Meanwhile, against a basket of major currencies, the ringgit traded mostly better in early trade.  

It rose against the British pound to 5.8896/8972 from 5.8916/8979 at Wednesday's close, depreciated vis-a-vis the euro to 5.0768/0833 from 5.0737/0791 yesterday, but weakened against the Japanese yen to 3.2775/2820 from 3.2249/2285 previously. 

The ringgit was also mostly higher against a few Asean currencies.

It strengthened against the Philippine peso to 8.35/8.38 from Wednesday's closing rate of 8.39/8.40, was firmer against the Indonesian rupiah to 297.5/298.1 from 300.2/300.8 at yesterday's close.

The local note edged up versus the Singapore dollar to 3.4995/5045 from 3.5001/5041 previously, but dropped against the Thai baht to 13.2864/3115 from 13.1390/1592. Bernama


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