Ringgit Falls Toward Five-Month Low as Export Growth Seen Easing
Malaysia’s ringgit fell toward a five-month low before a report that economists forecast will show export growth slowed in December. Government bonds declined.
Overseas shipments climbed 1.4 percent from a year earlier, compared with a 3.3 percent increase in November, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey. Industrial production advanced 6 percent in December, easing from a 7.5 percent gain the month before, a separate survey showed before figures due Feb. 8. The ringgit has weakened 1.3 percent this year after rallying 3.8 percent in 2012.
“Malaysian exports are on a modest but uncertain improvement path,” said Vishnu Varathan, a senior economist at Mizuho Corporate Bank Ltd. in Singapore. “On average, the ringgit has done quite well so that adds to the export headwinds in the near term.”
The ringgit fell 0.3 percent to 3.0958 per dollar as of 9:40 a.m. in Kuala Lumpur, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It touched 3.0986 earlier, near the 3.1190 level reached on Feb. 4 that was the weakest since Sept. 7. One-month implied volatility, a measure of expected moves in exchange rates used to price options, was steady at 7.7 percent.
The yield on the 3.434 percent notes due August 2014 rose eight basis points, or 0.08 percentage point, to 3.10 percent, according to Bursa Malaysia.
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