Ringgit ekes out gain on weak USD, buoyant oil

Ringgit ekes out gain on weak USD, buoyant oil
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KUALA LUMPUR (March 26): Ringgit rises as crude prices climb to a two-month high and the dollar loses ground against EM Asian currencies.

* USD/MYR falls 0.1% to 3.9150; gained 0.3% last week

** Support 3.8857, 3.8663, 3.8465; resistance 3.9290, 3.9313, 4.0055

** BBDXY drops 0.1%, Brent rises to $71.05, highest since Jan 25

* Market forces will determine the ringgit’s value and BNM has never had a target for the currency as the economy and financial markets are constantly evolving: Governor Muhammad Ibrahim said Friday

* Ringgit has managed to remain relatively stable despite recent risk aversion, thanks to Malaysia’s strong economy and a resilient local equities market, says Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at ANZ in Singapore

** Still, if trade tensions between the U.S. and China escalate and spill over into global trade, ringgit is unlikely to remain immune

** Sees near-term resistance for USD/MYR at 3.9175 and support at 3.8850

* United Overseas Bank expects USD/MYR to decline to 3.88 in 2Q, 3.85 in 3Q and 3.80 in 4Q, according to its quarterly global outlook released March 23

** Pace of ringgit’s gains will probably slow with BNM expected to remain on hold and Brent crude likely to settle within a broad trading range of $60 to $70 for the coming 4 quarters

* 10-year govt bond yield fell 1bp last week to 3.94%

* Govt to auction 3-year bonds by end-March: central bank website