The ringgit continued to weaken against the US dollar as demand for the greenback appreciated further on the back of higher US Treasury yields, analysts said.

At 6pm, the local note eased by 35 basis points to 4.7180/7220 from Tuesday’s close of 4.7145/7165.

SPI Asset Management managing director Stephen Innes said despite the better-than-expected Malaysian trade data, the ringgit could not climb higher, with the US Treasury 10-year yields turning marginally higher at around 4 per cent.

“This is negatively impacting the improved risk sentiment that had slowed demand for the safe-haven US dollar this week,” he told Bernama.

Malaysia’s trade continued its upward trajectory in September 2022, rising by 31.4 per cent to RM256.91 billion compared to the same month last year — the 20th consecutive month of double-digit growth, according to the International Trade and Industry Ministry.

Innes noted that the Chinese yuan also continued its retreat, and given the solid ringgit and yuan correlation, it was not surprising to see the ringgit close lower.

The weaker yuan has been driven by recessionary concerns in China, which could negatively impact Malaysian companies which export to China, he added.

“The weaker ringgit and strong trade data chime with exporters’ retention of the US dollar as the recent surge in the greenback hints at US dollar scarcity. Therefore, exporters are reluctant to convert the US dollar for the local unit,” Innes said.

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mixed against a basket of major currencies.

It fell versus the British pound to 5.3233/3278 from 5.3118/3141 yesterday and marginally eased against the Singapore dollar to 3.3176/3207 from 3.3168/3184.

The local currency slightly improved against the euro to 4.6326/6365 from 4.6372/6391 previously and gained vis-a-vis the Japanese yen to 3.1611/1642 from 3.1630/1646 at Tuesday’s closing.