KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 12): The Malaysian ringgit sustained its position below the 3.00 level against the Singapore dollar, trading at a high of 2.9894 this morning.
Having dropped below the 3.00 psychological level yesterday, the ringgit, which some quarters has said as being largely undervalued last year, traded at 2.9912 against the Singapore dollar as at 11.04am.
Similarly, it has also continued to level against the US dollar — staying under the 4.00 mark for the second consecutive day. It was trading at 3.9732 against the greenback.
Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER) senior research fellow Shankaran Nambiar told theedgemarkets.com he expects to see this trend to continue moving forward “at least in the near future” on the back of stronger oil prices, healthy exports and a slew of foreign inflows.
“Assumption for the average price of crude oil during Budget 2018 was modest [at US$52/bbl]. Seeing that the price has been going up, can at least help maintain the figures tabled in the budget.
“Exports have also been doing well, and is expected to continue to do well — and there has been a shift of portfolio fund moving into this region, where Malaysia in that sense has been losing out [previously],” Nambiar said.
He said there is also some expectation that the overnight policy rate (OPR) “might chalk up a little bit”, but emphasised Bank Negara Malaysia is not under pressure to do so.
“I am quite optimistic. Malaysia’s short term economic factors are looking good,” Nambiar added.