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Malaysia's ringgit tumbles to weakest since 1998 as oil retreats
[KUALA LUMPUR] Malaysia's ringgit tumbled to the weakest level since 1998, extending an eighth week of declines as falling oil prices and political turmoil spur capital outflows.
The ringgit dropped 1.4 per cent to 4.067 per dollar at 9.56am in Kuala Lumpur, extending this week's retreat to 3.6 per cent. Oil dropped 0.4 per cent in New York, heading for the lowest close since 2009.
Foreign funds have dumped about US$3 billion of the nation's shares this year as Prime Minister Najib Razak grapples with allegations of financial irregularities at a state investment company. The export-dependent economy is also threatened by a rout in commodity prices and China's yuan devaluation this week.
Gross domestic product rose 4.9 per cent in the three months through June from a year earlier, after climbing 5.6 per cent in the previous quarter, the central bank said in Kuala Lumpur Thursday.