SINGAPORE: The exchange rate between the Singapore dollar (SGD) and the Malaysian Ringgit (RM) encountered considerable fluctuations this week, notably surging to 3.53 on Wednesday (13 Dec).
However, the rate exhibited notable volatility from Wednesday to Friday.
On Thursday at 4:30 p.m. local time, the SGD to RM exchange rate briefly spiked to 3.54, only to decline to 3.52 by 6:00 p.m., eventually settling at 3.51—a level higher than the preceding months.
On Friday, the exchange rate is at 3.51 as of 1.30 pm.
Before December 2023, the Singapore dollar had already reached the S$1 to RM3.5 threshold on a few occasions, notably in July, October, and November.
Over the past month, the Singapore dollar has risen from 3.43 to 3.5 against the Malaysian Ringgit.
On 12 July, the Ringgit against the Singapore dollar dropped to a daily low of 3.4783.
At the beginning of this year, the exchange rate was only 3.28.
Ringgit’s value against the U.S. dollar fell on 13 Dec
The Ringgit faced additional challenges against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday, dropping to a level of US$1 to RM4.7, according to The News Straits Times (NST).
This decline could be attributed primarily to two factors: the plummeting oil prices and speculation surrounding the U.S. Federal Reserve’s interest rate policies in the first quarter of 2024.
Oil prices plummeted by over 3%, triggered by the U.S. inflation data released in November, as highlighted by Stephen Innes, Managing Director of SPI Asset Management.
CNBC reported a 0.1% inflation increase from October, contrary to economists’ predictions of stagnation in prices.
Additionally, the data indicated that the U.S. Federal Reserve is unlikely to lower interest rates in the early part of 2024.
According to Reuters, the Federal Reserve has set interest rates in the U.S. between 5.25% to 5.5%.
The decision to keep rates unchanged was announced following a meeting on Wednesday, contributing to “big negative drivers,” around the ringgit, Innes said.
The drop in ringgit also came a day after Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim announced a Cabinet reshuffle, which included the appointment of a second finance minister.
Innes emphasized the potential political instability risk associated with such reshuffles, stating, “There is always a bit of political instability risk when foreign investors view a Cabinet reshuffle.
“Local investors are better in tune with Malaysian politics, but outsiders not so much.”
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