In the month of December 2018 the Indonesian rupiah weakened 0.99 percent from IDR 14,339 per US dollar on the last trading day of November 2018 to IDR 14,481 per US dollar on the last trading day of December 2018 (based on Bank Indonesia’s benchmark JISDOR rate).
Although this performance is in stark contrast to robust rupiah appreciation that had occurred in November (when the Indonesian currency appreciated 5.83 percent against the greenback), we still consider it a good performance for the rupiah. After all, not too long ago many analysts – including the team of Indonesia Investments - expected the rupiah to end 2018 well beyond the IDR 15,000 per US dollar level.
Therefore, the rupiah’s performance in full-year 2018 (weakening 6.89 percent against the US dollar) gives rise to mixed reactions. On the one hand, it is a poor performance, reflected by the fact that the Indonesian rupiah is among the most fragile currencies in Asia. It should thus be explained how come the rupiah performed weaker compared to its regional counterparts. Or in other words, what are the specific weaknesses in Indonesia that makes the country more vulnerable to capital outflows in times of global turmoil?
This articles discusses:
• the performance of the rupiah in December
• the performance of the rupiah in full-year 2018, particularly the factors that have led to pressures on the rupiah
• the outlook for the rupiah in 2019
Read the full article in the December 2018 edition of our monthly research report. You can purchase this report by sending an email to email@example.com or a WhatsApp message to the following number: +62(0)8788.410.6944