Singaporeans’ mad rush to change their money for Malaysian ringgit has left several popular moneychangers completely ‘sold out’ of the currency.
“We cannot meet demand for ringgit, and have to turn away many customers who still try their luck,” said Rafffles Place moneychanger Mr R Tang, 46, who displayed a prominent sign at his shop stating “Ringgit Sold Out” when he ran out last Friday.
M.M Shariff Traders at The Arcade was seen turning away customers with loud announcements of “no more, no more ringgit!”
Driven by the ringgit falling to an all-time low against the Singapore dollar, small-time speculators and holidaymakers have been rushing to take advantage of the favourable rates and are stocking up on the currency.
As of Tuesday, 16 June 2015, most moneychangers were trading the ringgit at 2.78 to the Singapore dollar.
When Yahoo Singapore headed down to the popular stretch of moneychangers at Collyer Quay’s The Arcade on Tuesday afternoon, three shops were completely out of the currency while others told us they were running low.
By 5pm, small queues had started forming at almost all the shops as office workers lined up to change their money – and eight out of 10 of them were there for more ringgit.
“I’m going for a holiday to Malaysia this weekend, I’ve been changing about $200 every day for the past three days and it just keeps getting lower and lower,” said bank officer Raymus Wee, 34.
“At this rate, I think I will be changing more, have to take advantage while it lasts.”
Administrative executive Julie Yeo, 37, was also in line to change about $1,000 to ringgit, getting about RM$2,780 in return. The mother of three travels across the Causeway at least once every two weeks to buy milk powder, diapers and groceries for her family.
“This is really good for us, suddenly everything is so much cheaper. Milk powder is much more expensive here, making the trip over is very worth it," she said.
“Keep now, spend it later also can,” said retiree Tan Kok Keng, 69, who has been spending his afternoons around The Arcade checking rates and speculating with his friends about whether the ringgit will continue to fall.
“I have never seen the ringgit so low. Imagine, at one time not so long ago, it was RM2 to 1 Singapore dollar,” he said in Mandarin.