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buy apple account(buyappleacc.com):Foreign fund outflow a bane for ringgit

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CLICK TO ENLARGETHERE are a number of factors that influence the movement of a currency, and foreign fund flow is one of them.

Just like how strong net exports drive up the demand for the exporting nation’s currency, and in turn cause the local legal tender to appreciate, a net inflow of foreign funds such as in the form of portfolio and direct investments would also boost the domestic currency.

In simple terms, examples of foreign direct investments (FDIs) would include a multinational corporation establishing a factory in Malaysia.

Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investments refer to the buying of bonds and equities in the capital markets.

In the case of Malaysia, net FDIs have continued to be in the positive territory for many years, although it has largely been on a downward trend after hitting a peak of RM47bil in 2016.

In 2020, the net inflow contracted by 54.8% to RM14.6bil, following the adverse implications from the Covid-19 outbreak.Responding to StarBizWeek’s question on whether foreign funds are becoming less interested in Malaysian stocks, MIDF head of research Imran Yassin Md Yusof says it is difficult to provide a definite answer.

As for the portfolio investments, particularly in the bond market, RAM Ratings said last month that foreign interest in Malaysian bonds has been waning.

Foreign investors turned net sellers of Malaysian bonds in June, resulting in a net foreign outflow of RM497.1mil.

This effectively ended a 13-month streak of net foreign inflows, with falling demand observed since May.

According to RAM Rating, the continued weak foreign appetite may be partly attributed to heightened risk aversion amid rising Covid-19 infections, the extension of full lockdowns, and uncertainties on the economic and political front.

“Investors may also be repositioning their portfolios towards the United States to capitalise on growing prospects of faster-than-expected interest rate normalisation.

“While still-positive yield differentials favouring Malaysian Government Securities (MGS) and Government Investment Issue (GII) should continue to support capital flows in the short term, a strong recovery in the US could drive investors away from emerging markets that are still struggling with the economic fallout of the pandemic,” it said.

Despite the waning foreign investor interest in local bonds, the situation cannot be worse than what is experienced in the equities market.

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