The Coming China-Germany Trade Juggernaut

 

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In a post-American trade war, this emerging bloc will wield devastating power.

Stories of international angst over United States President Donald Trump’s protectionist approach are becoming more commonplace. Mr. Trump’s “buy American, hire American” catchphrase sounds good for many at home, but abroad, it is prompting a weighty reorganization of international trade relationships. And long term, the result will be a trade war that will prove ruinous to the U.S.

World trade has changed a great deal over the last several decades. The international community at large no longer depends on America’s giant import expenditures and exports. Parag Khanna of Politico wrote:

As Americans, it’s easy to assume that global trade still depends on America as the consumer of last resort. But that’s no longer true. In fact, the majority of trade in emerging-market nations is with each other, not with the U.S. In 1990, emerging economies sent 65 percent of their exports to developed nations like the U.S. and Europe, and only 35 percent to other developing countries. Today, that figure is nearly reversed. Continue reading

Trade With Japan Collapses: Exports Decline 7th Month, Imports Plunge Most Since 2009

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Abenomics was back in the spotlight tonight. Global trade with Japan has collapsed. Exports are down and imports are down even more. The result is an unexpected rise in Japan’s trade surplus, yet another failure of abenomics.

The Markit Japanese PMI shows Output falls at fastest rate in over two years, underpinned by a sharp
drop in new orders. Continue reading

China Actually Has Two Currencies—And It’s Fiddling Around With Both

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The problem with micromanaging the economy is that things become rather complicated. That’s why China needs two currencies, one for the mainland, one for international banks. Since the devaluation on August 11, it seems China is losing control of both.

The Renminbi (RMB) or yuan is used within mainland China and can be exchanged for other currencies very restrictively. It is primarily used in trade but also for tightly regulated inbound and outbound investments.

There is no real market for this exchange rate, instead the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) comes up with a fix every day and then trades around it. Continue reading

“All the Eurozone Is Capable of Is ‘Stealing’ Growth from Others”

There were other signs of traction. The Eurozone trade surplus with the rest of the world has been setting new records, powered by strong exports, particularly from Germany. This trend kicked off before the euro started tanking a year ago.So on Monday, ECB President Mario Draghi took the opportunity to slap himself and his colleagues on the back for their heroic and bold action, as these things are called, and offered an upbeat assessment of the Eurozone economy. He proclaimed “that growth is gaining momentum.” And he totally nailed it with three out of the four reasons he gave for that growth:

This is due to in particular the fall in oil prices, the gradual firming of external demand, easy financing conditions driven by our accommodative monetary policy, and the depreciation of the euro. Continue reading