Malaysian ringgit falls to 26-year low

Malaysia’s ringgit hit its lowest since the Asian financial crisis on Tuesday as Asia’s emerging currencies weakened against the dollar.

In trading on Tuesday, the Malaysian ringgit depreciated by about 0.3% against the US dollar, its worst since January 1998 at the height of the Asian financial crisis.

The currency has already fallen more than 4% this year, due in part to sluggish exports and rising U.S. interest rates.

Bank Negara Malaysia Governor Datuk Abdul Rashid Ghafoor said on Tuesday that the Malaysian currency’s performance was affected by “external factors” such as US interest rate hikes, geopolitical concerns and uncertainty over China’s economic outlook. Ta.

“The current ringgit level does not reflect the positive prospects for the Malaysian economy going forward,” he said in a statement.

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He said expected growth in global trade and Malaysian exports should have a positive impact on the currency this year.

The ringgit had previously hit its lowest since the 2016 Asian financial crisis, when emerging market currencies were hit by capital flight due to expectations of rising US interest rates.

Malaysia’s second finance minister, Amir Hamza Azizan, told state news agency Bernama on Monday that he expected the Malaysian currency to appreciate against the dollar after U.S. authorities signaled a halt to interest rate hikes.

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“Apart from that, all the efforts made by the prime minister and the finance minister to attract foreign direct investment will also contribute to strengthening the local economy,” he said.

This will definitely improve the ringgit.


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