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Ringgit Retreats as European Fiscal Crisis Deters Risk-Taking

Aug. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Malaysia’s ringgit fell, extending its retreat from a three-month high, as concern Europe’s financial crisis will worsen damped demand for riskier assets.

A proposed new wave of sovereign bond purchases by the European Central Bank may increase government reliance on such funding and won’t help solve the euro-area debt crisis, Germany’s Der Spiegel cited Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann as saying in an interview yesterday. Euro leaders are preparing for a critical month in the three-year-old regional crisis that will involve the formulation of an ECB bond-buying plan and a progress report by Greece’s international creditors.

“Weidmann criticized the ECB’s bond-buying plan and we’re still waiting for the troika of creditors’ assessment of Greece’s progress, so there’s still a lot of uncertainties,” said Nizam Idris, head of Asian fixed income and currencies at Macquarie Bank Ltd. in Singapore. “This is holding back Asian currencies.”

The ringgit declined 0.3 percent to 3.1095 per dollar as of 4:48 p.m. in Kuala Lumpur, after sliding 0.5 percent on Aug. 24, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It touched 3.0840 on Aug. 23, the strongest level since May 16. One-month implied volatility, a measure of exchange-rate swings used to price options, was steady at 6.90 percent.

Government bonds fell. The yield on the 3.314 percent notes due October 2017 rose two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 3.27 percent, according to Bursa Malaysia.

To contact the reporter on this story: Liau Y-Sing in Kuala Lumpur at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Regan at

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