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December 3rd 2008

When will the Dollar Rally End?

At this point, it should be clear to everyone that the ongoing Dollar Rally is due more to technical factors than US economic strength. In short, the Greenback is benefiting from the intertwined trends of risk aversion, capital flight from emerging markets, unwinding of carry trade positions, and the perception that the US is a safe haven to invest during periods of global economic uncertainty.

If this is indeed the case, shouldn’t the Dollar rally eventually come to an end? Based on economic fundamentals, the answer is a resounding ‘yes.’ The twin deficits of trade and government spending are unlikely to abate as a result of the credit crisis. In fact, the trillions of dollars in fresh government spending, combined with a decline in exports wrought by the suddenly strong Dollar, will probably exacerbate these dual trends. Based on almost every measure, the US economy remains dangerously over-leveraged. Fueled by cheap credit, household debt, government debt, and financial sector debt have exploded over the last couple decades, such that total US debt is estimated at a whopping %350 of GDP. Given that both China and the Middle East are facing domestic economic crises brought on by a drop in exports and a decline in the price of oil, respectively, it seems unlikely that they will have the resources, let alone the inclination, to continue to fund this debt. Seeking Alpha reports:

Chinese have recently lowered interest rates considerably, have started large domestic stimulus packages and have even tried to depreciate their currency. Again, one should anticipate a much lower appetite for U.S. assets going forward.

Read More: Will the Dollar Rally Survive?

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

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