Ringgit opens weaker as US bond yields rise

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit continued to weaken against the US dollar as the 10-year United States Treasury yield rose to 4.91 per cent — the highest since 2007, suggesting that inflation premium is on the rise, said an analyst.

At 9 am, the local currency traded easier at at 4.7615/7650 against the greenback from Wednesday’s close of 4.7445/7485.

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist and social finance head Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said the main concern in the market now is the Palestine-Israel conflict.

“The United States President’s unequivocal support for Israel could potentially prolong the conflict and under such circumstances, the US dollar is likely to be the main beneficiary, given its safe haven status,” he told Bernama.

Mohd Afzanizam added that as such, market sentiments may remain cautious today.

Meanwhile, the ringgit had also eased versus a basket of major currencies, except the British pound where it had strengthened to 5.7809/7852 from 5.7869/7917 at Wednesday’s close.

The local note fell against the euro to 5.0181/0218 from 5.0140/0182 and was lower against the yen at 3.1794/1820 from 3.1685/1714 at yesterday’s close.

It had also traded mostly lower against other Asian currencies.

The ringgit declined against the Thai baht to 13.0757/0907 versus 13.0738/0914 at yesterday’s close and eased against the Indonesian rupiah at 301.5/302.0 from 301.2/301.5 previously.

It slipped against the Singapore dollar to 3.4669/469 from yesterday’s close of 3.4649/4681 but improved vis-a-vis the Philippines’ peso to 8.36/8.39 from 8.37/8.38 yesterday. – Bernama