KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit closed lower against the US dollar today as the greenback benefitted from expectations that the US Federal Reserve might raise interest rates by 0.75 percentage point at its July 26-27 Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting than a full percentage point, said an analyst.
At 6 pm, the local currency slipped to 4.4520/4550 versus the greenback from Friday’s close of 4.4480/4505.
SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes said there was a further downside risk for the currency market due to reports of new COVID-19 infections in China.
"The longer restrictions remain in place, the longer it will take for a consumer-driven recovery to take place. Hence, that could weigh on local currencies.
"Also I think some investors are concerned by the increase in Omicron variant cases across Asia especially as cases ticked much higher in Singapore,” he added.,
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The ringgit traded lower against a basket of major currencies.
The local currency weakened against the Singapore dollar at 3.1884/1908 compared with 3.1688/1710 on Friday and depreciated versus the British pound to 5.3326/3362 from 5.2629/2658 previously.
It decreased vis-a-vis the euro to 4.5223/5254 from 4.4662/4687 on Friday and went down against the Japanese yen to 3.2203/2227 from 3.2048/20699. - Bernama