Forex Blog: Currency Trading News & Analysis.

January 30th 2008

Why a Strong Dollar is Good for the US Economy

For at least the duration of the current administration, the official US stance towards its currency has been a "strong dollar" policy.  In hindsight, it appears that this policy was entirely baseless, since its was directly undermined by the simultaneous easy monetary policy, and thus it stands to reason that US policymakers did not actually believe that a strong Dollar policy was necessary to pursue.  In a recent op-ed piece published in the Wall Street Journal, one analyst outlines the case for a strong dollar, and by extension, why the depreciating Dollar is bad for the US economy. 

First, since oil contracts are settled in Dollars, a weak Dollar has directly contributed to high oil prices, which has several negative economic and geopolitical consequences. Second, a cheap Dollar is eroding the purchasing power of US consumers directly by making imports more expensive and indirectly through inflation. Third, the weak Dollar shifts the balance of economic power in favor of US competitors, which don’t need to grow as fast to keep pace with the US, in Dollar terms.  Finally, the recent weakness threatens the long term reserve status of the Dollar, which has important implications for economic growth and jobs creation.

On the other hand, argues the analyst, the conventional wisdom that a declining Dollar is necessary to correct the current account and trade deficit is bunk, since much of the trade deficit is accounted for by intra-company trade and since the current account deficit is generally overstated and not connected to currency valuations. In short, he argues, it is in the best interest of the US to align its rhetoric with its economic and monetary policies such that the long term luster of the Dollar is restored.

Read More: The Dollar and the Market Mess

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Posted by Adam Kritzer | in Commentary, US Dollar | No Comments »

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