Currencies

Dollar rises as markets turn eyes to Opec

European bourses are mirroring a tentative Asia session as the dollar continues to be supported by better US economic data and investors turn their attention to a meeting between Opec members. Sentiment is underpinned by US index futures suggesting the S&P 500 will gain 3 points to 2,207.3 when trading gets under way later in […]

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Banks

Basel Committe fail to sign off on latest bank reform measures

Banking regulators have failed to sign off the latest package of global industry reforms, leaving a question mark hanging over bankers who complain they have faced endlessly evolving regulation since the financial crisis. Policymakers had hoped to agree the contentious new measures at a crunch meeting held in Chile this week, but a senior official […]

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Banks, Financial

Banking app targets millennials who want help budgeting

Graduate debt, rent and high living costs have made it hard for millennials to save for a house, a pension or even a holiday. For Ollie Purdue, a 23-year-old law graduate, this was reason enough to launch Loot, a banking app targeted at tech-dependent 20-somethings who want help to manage their money and avoid falling […]

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Economy

Eurozone inflation climbs to highest since April 2014

A welcome dose of good news before next week’s big European Central Bank meeting. Year on year inflation in the eurozone has climbed to its best rate since April 2014 this month, accelerating to 0.6 per cent from 0.5 per cent on the back of the rising cost of services and the fading effect of […]

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Financial

Wealth manager Brewin Dolphin hit by restructuring costs

Profits at wealth manager Brewin Dolphin were hit by restructuring costs as the company continued to shift its focus towards portfolio management. The FTSE 250 company reported pre-tax profits of £50.1m in the year to September 30, down 17.9 per cent from £61m the previous year. Finance director Andrew Westenberger said its 2015 figure was […]

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Categorized | Currencies

Ringgit knocked to weakest level since Asian financial crisis


Posted on November 24, 2016

Malaysia’s ringgit has hit its weakest point since the Asian financial crisis, as the US dollar continues to strengthen and push down on currencies the world over.

The ringgit softened today by 0.5 per cent to as much as 4.4675 per dollar, its weakest level since January 1998 amid the worst of the Asian financial crisis.

The recent weakening of the ringgit, in the wake of the post-US election rally in the greenback, has pushed it past the previous low levels struck in September last year.

Yesterday, Malaysia’s central bank kept benchmark lending rates unchanged. Many analysts expected the decision, reasoning the weakening currency would prompt Bank Negara Malaysia to stand pat.

Already, policymakers have had to play down fears they might introduce capital controls. Over the past week, Bank Negara asked foreign banks to stop trading the ringgit in an effort to curb what it described as “speculative and damaging” offshore trading of the currency.

Since Donald Trump was elected US president earlier this month, the ringgit has weakened 5.9 per cent, a drop second only to the Japanese yen among other Asian currencies. So far this year, it is the fourth-worst-performing regional currency, with a 3.9 per cent drop.

Malaysia’s Kuala Lumpur Composite Index was down 0.3 per cent today, and is down 4 per cent this year.