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Ringgit Gains as Growth Seen Accelerating; Government Bonds Fall

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Nov. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Malaysia’s ringgit climbed before reports forecast to show the nation’s economic growth accelerated and the current-account surplus widened. The yield on 10-year government bonds yields rose to a two-month high.

Gross domestic product increased 4.7 percent in the third quarter from 4.3 percent in the previous three months, according to the median estimate of 19 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News before official data due at 6 p.m. local time. The ringgit rose for a second day after Federal Reserve chairman nominee Janet Yellen said yesterday she would maintain the record stimulus that has stoked global asset gains and suppressed borrowing costs until the U.S. economy is stronger.

“Risk appetite for Asian currencies is improving because Yellen’s statement sends a strong signal that tapering will be on the back burner for a while,” said Yeah Kim Leng, chief economist at RAM Holdings Bhd. in Kuala Lumpur. “The ringgit’s strength will be further supported by the improvement in domestic economic data.”

The currency appreciated 0.1 percent to 3.2023 per dollar in Kuala Lumpur, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It dropped 0.7 percent this week and touched 3.2123 on Nov. 13, the weakest since Oct. 9.

One-month implied volatility, a measure of expected moves in the exchange rate used to price options, fell nine basis points, or 0.09 percentage point, to 8.66 percent. The gauge declined 37 basis points this week.

Malaysia’s current-account surplus widened to 10.7 billion ringgit ($3.3 billion) in the third quarter from 2.6 billion ringgit in the preceding three months, according to the median forecast of analysts polled by Bloomberg News before data due at 6 p.m. local time today.

The yield on the 3.48 percent bonds due March 2023 gained four basis points to 3.93 percent, the highest since Sept. 6, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The rate rose 21 basis points this week.

To contact the reporter on this story: Elffie Chew in Kuala Lumpur at echew16@bloomberg.net

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

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