Ringgit Near 11-Week High as Factory Output Forecast to Improve

Malaysia’s ringgit traded near an 11-week high ahead of a government report forecast to show the Southeast Asian nation’s factory production strengthened.

Industrial output expanded 5.9 percent in November from a year earlier, after rising 5.8 percent the previous month, according to the median estimate of 16 economists in a Bloomberg survey before data due today. Overseas shipments gained 3.3 percent in November, the fastest pace since June, official figures showed yesterday.

“We’ve started to see signs of bottoming in the global slowdown,” said Sim Moh Siong, a currency strategist at Bank of Singapore Ltd. “Being an export-dependent nation, Malaysia should benefit. Over time, it should show up in better economic numbers and that would benefit the ringgit.”

The ringgit traded at 3.0415 per dollar as of 9:08 a.m. in Kuala Lumpur, compared with yesterday’s close of 3.0426, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It touched 3.0389, near the 3.0296 level reached on Jan. 3, which was the strongest since Oct. 18. One-month implied volatility, a measure of expected moves in exchange rates used to price options, was steady at 4.92 percent.

Government bonds retreated yesterday. The yield on the 3.314 percent notes due October 2017 climbed one basis point, or 0.01 percentage point, to 3.27 percent, according to Bursa Malaysia.

To contact the reporter on this story: Liau Y-Sing in Kuala Lumpur at yliau@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Regan at jregan19@bloomberg.net.

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