Rupiah inches up over US economic downslide

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The rupiah firmed slightly in the Jakarta interbank market on Thursday morning over data of the US economic growth slowing down.

As of 9:48 a.m. local time on Thursday, the Indonesian currency traded at Rp14,183 to the US dollar, 40 points higher, or 0.28 percent, than its earlier position of Rp14,223 per dollar.

The US purchasing managers’ indexes (PMI) composite index decreased in March 2019 for the service and manufacturing sectors, Samuel Aset Manajemen economist Lana Soelistianingsih pointed out.

“Several US data have started to hint at a slowdown, thus indicative of the fact that the US economy is past the peak rate of economic growth,” she remarked.

The IHS Markit US Composite PMI posted 54.6 in March 2019, signaling a slight expansion above the consensus expectation of 54.3, down from 55.5 in February.

The slowdown occurred in the service sector, recording 55.4 in March, down from 56 in February and the manufacturing sector, with the index declining to 52.4 in March than 53 in February. The index for the manufacturing sector reached its lowest level since June 2017.

Other survey by ISM indicated that the index for the non-manufacturing sector fell drastically to 56.1 in March as compared to 59.7 in February. The business confidence index increased despite the two sectors experiencing a slowdown.

Soelistianingsih has forecast the Indonesian currency to strengthen in the range of Rp14,200 to Rp14,220 per dollar on Thursday. EDITED BY INE

Source: ANTARA News