KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit ended on a firmer footing Friday as investors cheered good news on the opening of the US economy and encouraging developments in Gilead Sciences’ Covid-19 treatment drug trial.
At 6pm, the ringgit improved to 4.3650/3750 against the US dollar from 4.3700/3780 at the close on Thursday.
The positive news has offset the bearish news from China, where its gross domestic product contracted by 6.8% in the first quarter of 2020 (Q1 2020), the worst performance since 1992.
AxiCorp global chief market strategist Stephen Innes said investors were also positive over Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s proposal to build an economy that is less dependent on China, showing there are some serious thoughts that Japanese companies will relocate to other Asean centres.
“Malaysia is a prime destination given its tax-friendly environment, excellent standard of living, available manufacturing facilities, and the profusion of English as a second language,” he said.
It was reported that patients treated with Gilead Sciences’ antiviral medicine remdesivir are seeing rapid recoveries in fever and respiratory symptoms, with nearly all patients discharged in less than a week.
Meanwhile, the ringgit also traded mostly higher against other major currencies.
The local unit rose against the yen to 4.0465/0562 from 4.0549/0635 yesterday and advanced against the British pound to 5.4200/4342 from 5.4503/4620.
It also appreciated against the euro to 4.7216/7338 from 4.7489/7593 but declined against the Singapore dollar to 3.0621/0702 from 3.0604/0673 previously. – Bernama