Ringgit hits 17-year low on weak commodities, Fed caution

Malaysian ringgit bank notes.
Malaysian ringgit bank notes.PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE (REUTERS) - Malaysia's ringgit hit a 17-year low on Monday as a global slump in commodity prices added to concerns over sluggish exports, while investors braced for a US Federal Reserve meeting that might take another step toward lifting interest rates.

The ringgit eased 0.1 per cent to 3.8110 per US dollar, its weakest since September 1998.

The ringgit pared losses again as the central bank has been spotted intervening to keep the worst performing Asian currency firmer than 3.8100 per dollar, traders said. The currency was pegged at 3.8 between 1998 and 2005.

Malaysia's international reserves fell to US$100.5 billion (S$137.50 billion) as of July 15 from US$105.5 billion as of June 30, central bank data showed on July 23.