China’s recent move to devalue the yuan has sent shock waves through the global financial markets and has convinced most observers that a new front in the global currency wars has begun. The move has caused many observes to envision a new round of competitive devaluations around the globe in which the race to the bottom will intensify. In this scenario they envision that the U.S. dollar will solidify its standing as the only strong currency. This misses the point entirely.
In the past, most of the action in the “currency wars” had been focused on the efforts that many nations undertook to prevent their currencies from rising against the U.S. dollar, which itself was being weakened by a perpetually easy Federal Reserve and persistently negative U.S. trade and budget deficits. But with the dollar now strengthening significantly, the Chinese government has become concerned that the yuan, which has remained largely tethered to the dollar, had become too strong against other currencies, particularly its primary trading partners in Asia and the Pacific. To remain competitive locally, it decided to ease the tether to the dollar and instead let its currency float more freely. The purpose and implications of this significant pivot has largely escaped the U.S. media. In reality, the move raises the likelihood that the yuan will rise significantly when the dollar resumes its long-term bear market, not that it will remain weak forever.
If you’d like to get a better idea of what the true level of unemployment is, check out this U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics table… ‘U-6’ is what you want to see. Please also note, the methodology for coming up with these numbers was changed some years ago and still do not represent the true rates, which as Wynn says, are around 15% – 20% unemployment. Definitions have changed and some factors have been left out. For the foreseeable future, this is likely the most truth you’ll get from the government.
You can see the worthwhile 26 minute Steve Wynn’s KNPB interview HERE.
Las Vegas icon says don’t believe government stats on jobs, inflation
One of America’s most astute businessmen, known for having expanded the Las Vegas strip of resort hotels and casinos in the 1990s, says the U.S. remains mired in an economic funk and any talk of a broad recovery is “pure fiction. A lie.”
Steve Wynn, the 73-year-old founder and CEO of Wynn Resorts, made the comments in a televised interview with Jon Ralston of PBS’ “Ralston Live.” He opened the Wynn Hotel and casino in Macao, China, in 2006, and is known as an international gaming and casino magnate.
Central bankers from Beijing to Brasilia have been acquiring a lot more dollars of late, but the overweight of the greenback has reached its limits. There is only one way left to go. It is time to sell the dollar once again.
Or so says Jerome Booth.
Booth has been in the currency and fixed income markets since 1999. That’s when he helped launch the Ashmore Group, one of the largest pure-play emerging market fund managers in the world with around $70 billion under management. Before he retired to write books and launch his new private equity firm New Sparta Limited, Booth was a regular source of mine here at FORBES. He’d talk about the wonders of emerging market debt; their relative strength compared to the Western world and how they’ve improved from their “Third World” days of yesteryear; and the day of reckoning that would come when the Chinese yuan becomes a reserve currency. Continue reading