Singapore Dollar (SGD)

What Is the Singapore Dollar (SGD)?

The Singapore dollar, abbreviated as SGD, is the official currency of the Southeast Asian island state of Singapore. Currency traders know it as "the sing."

The Singapore dollar is made up of 100 cents and is often represented by the symbol S$ to set it apart from other dollar-based currencies.

One S$ was worth about $1.36 USD as of March 25, 2022. Over the previous five years, its value has ranged from a low of $1.31 in mid-April 2018 to a high of $1.45 in mid-March 2020.

Key Takeaways

  • SGD is the abbreviation for the Singapore dollar, which is the official currency of the island state of Singapore.
  • The Singapore dollar, nicknamed the "sing," is made up of 100 cents and is represented with the symbol S$ to set it apart from other dollar-based currencies.
  • Since 1985, Singapore has allowed its dollar to float within an undisclosed range monitored by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
  • The Singapore dollar has a rare AAA rating from Fitch Ratings.

Understanding the Singapore Dollar

The Singapore dollar has been in existence since 1967, shortly after the island seceded from the Federation of Malaysia. The Singapore currency was kept at par with the Malaysian ringgit until 1973. Since then, it has been pegged to a fixed but undisclosed basket of currencies that are associated with the republic's diverse trade links.

Since the financial crisis of 2007–2008, the SGD has become one of the world's best-performing currencies. With a robust and growing financial center, stable housing prices, and undemanding regulatory practices, Singapore has become a favored destination for offshore investors and entrepreneurs.

The Singapore dollar is the twelfth most traded currency in the world, and the third-highest in Asia, behind the Japanese yen (JPY) and China's renminbi. The SGD accounts for nearly 1.8% of daily volume in currency trading.

Triple AAA Rating

About S$30 billion is currently in circulation. It is fully backed by gold, silver, and other assets held by the nation's central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

In late 2020, Fitch Ratings reaffirmed its AAA rating on the Singapore dollar, despite the significant impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the nation-state's economy. Fitch cited its "exceptionally strong external and fiscal balance sheets, high per capita income, favorable business environment, and sound macroeconomic policy framework."

Malay is the official language of Singapore but English, Chinese, and Tamil also are widely spoken.

Commerce in Singapore

Singapore has been a major trading and shipping hub since the early 19th century when Britain's East India Company spotted its potential as a commercial hub for its Asian trade. It remained a British crown colony before and after its occupation by Japan during World War II.

After gaining its independence in the 1960s, Singapore plunged into a period of manufacturing growth and developed rapidly into a high-income nation. Manufacturing and the services sectors remain its key drivers of growth. It also is a key financial services center for the region and remains an important port.

Singapore has one of the world's most business-friendly regulatory environments for entrepreneurs, according to the World Bank.

Singapore's status as a world-class business hub is more impressive in light of its tiny size. The entire city-state has a population of less than 5.7 million.

The island republic is one of the "four Asian tigers" whose economies have sustained a high rate of growth since the 1960s, propelling them into the ranks of the world's wealthiest nations. In addition to Singapore, the Asian tigers are Hong Kong, Taiwan, and South Korea.

What Is the Exchange Pair for Singapore Dollars to U.S. Dollars?

Followers of the foreign exchange rate will find this exchange pair posted as USD/SGD.

Travelers to Singapore can expect the rates they receive from a bank or money exchange office to reflect fees of 3% to 5% of the current posted exchange rate.

The fees apply both ways. If you leave Singapore and want to convert any leftover Singapore dollars back into U.S. dollars, you'll lose about 3% to 5% of the value of your money to fees.

What Is the Historical Exchange Rate for Singapore Dollars to U.S. Dollars?

In the year ending March 25, 2022, the value of the Singapore dollar ranged between 1.3217 and 1.3662 per U.S. dollar. Fitch Solutions expected it to average 1.3450 per USD in 2022, saying the currency appeared to be in a "slightly stronger" than usual position.

What Is the Symbol for the Singapore Currency?

The currency code for the Singapore currency in the forex markets is SGD. Its currency code is S$.

Consumers who wish to exchange U.S. dollars for Singapore dollars will see the exchange rate posted as USD/SGD.

Article Sources

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  2. OAND. "Singapore Dollar Currency SGD."

  3. Countries of the World. "Top 25 most traded currencies."

  4. Corporate Finance Institute. "What Is the Singapore Dollar (SGD)?

  5. Fitch Ratings. "Fitch Affirms Singapore at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable."

  6. Britannica. "History of Singapore."

  7. Corporate Finance Institute. "A Brief History of Singapore and Its Economy."

  8. The World Bank. "The World Bank in Singapore: Overview."

  9. The World Bank. "The World Bank in Singapore: Overview."

  10. World Bank. "Population total: Singapore."

  11. Corporate Finance Institute. "What Are the Four Asian Tigers?"

  12. Yahoo! Finance. "USD/SGD."

  13. Yahoo! Finance. "Early monetary policy tightening to see stronger Singapore Dollar on average in 2022."

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