Af­fin Hwang: Fund in­flows ex­pected to set ring­git on up­trend

New Straits Times - - Business | News -

KUALA LUMPUR: The re­cent in­flow of funds into the coun­try is ex­pected to set the ring­git on an up­trend against the US dol­lar this year.

Af­fin Hwang As­set Man­age­ment Bhd man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Teng Chee Wai said he was bullish over the ring­git’s per­for­mance with the coun­try’s im­prov­ing eco­nomic fun­da­men­tals and as Bank Ne­gara Malaysia’s re­serves con­tin­ued to rise.

“It will take a while for the ring­git to touch be­tween 4.20 and 4.25. With our trade sur­plus con­tribut­ing to the lo­cal unit’s ap­pre­ci­a­tion, in­vestor con­fi­dence at some point will re­turn and make it more sus­tain­able,” said Teng dur­ing his pre­sen­ta­tion at the Af­fin Hwang As­set Man­age­ment In­vest­ment Fo­rum 2017 on “What Trump’s Pres­i­dency means for Asian and Malaysian Mar­kets?”, here, on Satur­day.

He said cur­rently, the ring­git’s move­ment was still ten­ta­tive and to reach to the level of 4.25, Bank Ne­gara would first need to re­plen­ish money lost over the past few months.

Teng said only then would Bank Ne­gara al­low the ring­git to ap­pre­ci­ate, with more in­flows com­ing into the coun­try and the mar­ket start­ing to see earn­ings fol­low.

“Un­less some­thing big hap­pens like an elec­tion re­sult, then the ring­git may be im­pacted,” he added.

Teng said Asia’s mar­kets had been catch­ing up well this year, com­pared with the time when China was hav­ing an eco­nomic slow­down and of Don­ald Trump win­ning the United States pres­i­dency, which saw the green­back rally.

“The sit­u­a­tion is rev­ers­ing and we are see­ing var­i­ous as­set classes in Asia do­ing well,” he added.

Mean­while, at a sep­a­rate ses­sion, Deutsche Bank Asia FX Re­search global mar­kets strate­gist Mal­lika Sachdeva said the ring­git would not be weak­en­ing any fur­ther, hav­ing gone through its worst per­for­mance.

“It will also not strengthen so much this year in need­ing time to re­cover, pro­vided trends over the past few weeks con­tinue, and the eco­nomic en­vi­ron­ment is sta­ble,” she added. Ber­nama

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