On Friday morning the U.S. dollar came close to its lowest point of the year against the euro, according to The Wall Street Journal, on expectations that the Fed will have to continue its easy money policies for longer than first forecast thanks to the government shutdown.
More broadly, the shutdown and fiscal brinksmanship over the debt ceiling has again renewed the debate over the dollar and its status at the center of the financial system as the global reserve currency.
An op-ed earlier in the week from the Chinese state-controlled news agency Xinhua made waves calling for consideration of a “de-Americanized” world in response to the D.C. drama. This world, according to the article, may include “the introduction of a new international reserve currency that is to be created to replace the dominant U.S. dollar, so that the international community could permanently stay away from the spillover of the intensifying domestic political turmoil in the United States.”
Meantime, famed UBS director of floor operations Art Cashin said in an interview that the drop in the US dollar was concerning him. He told CNBC it could be the unwinding of the flight-to-safety trade, but said if it continued a couple of days “it may indicate the Washington follies did a little damage to the full faith and credit of the United States.”
But in the accompanying video interview with Martin Wolf, chief economics commentator for the Financial Times, he tells The Daily Ticker the dollar is under no threat as the world’s reserve currency.
“I’ve never been very worried about this,” he asserts. “The reason for that is there really is no alternative. The Chinese are not going to offer – and they cannot, given where they are in development, I think, for a decade or more – a genuine competitor for the dollar.”
Check out the video to see why the Chinese renminbi and other global currencies could not fill this roll, and more of Wolf's thoughts about the dollar.
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