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China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:08 AM   #1
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China dollar peg removed. What now?

Hi all,

I read that China (and Malaysia) have removed the dollar peg for its currency and will instead evaluate it against a basket of currencies. From the news stories, it sounds like it could really be a negative for the dollar.

Anyone have any opinions on how to either protect or profit from this situation? Should we all run out and buy China ETFs (or ADRs)? Should we hedge our dollars somehow? Should we exchange it for the Yuen now?

Opinions?
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:17 AM   #2
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olav23

Anyone have any opinions on how to either protect or profit from this situation? Should we all run out and buy China ETFs (or ADRs)? Should we hedge our dollars somehow? Should we exchange it for the Yuen now?
I think the dollar is very vulnerable. Since most of our investments are in 401K-type investments with limited options, I have 25% in Canadian investments (the 25% that are actually in Canada), and of the remaining 75%, half is in an EAFE (international index) fund and half in the US market in a basket of sector funds. We plan to retire in Canada, and the currency risk is a big concern. This is my way of dealing with it. Today, my US funds lost a bit (would have been more but gold mining fund came to the rescue!) but the international and the Canadian gained. Nevertheless, I lost a little ground if I look at the portfolio in Canadian dollars due to the exchange rate move, even though in US dollars it went up a bit.

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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:28 AM   #3
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

I've been thinking about that with today's news on the Yuan... We are China's biggest market. They are rolling in dollars from the extreme imbalance of trade with us. What can they do now, other than continuing to buy US debt with the dollars? If they try to make any extreme moves, won't they sink their own ship? They seem to like the Capitalist hand that feeds them... or is it their Communist hand that feeds us? URK!!
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:30 AM   #4
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

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Originally Posted by bosco
We plan to retire in Canada
Ditto. If you play your cards right, that 401k becomes tax free..... or so I hear.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:37 AM   #5
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marshac
Ditto. If you play your cards right, that 401k becomes tax free..... or so I hear.
I wasn't aware of that. I thought that IRAs and 401Ks were treated the same in Canada as in the US (but Canada doesn't recognize Roths). The tax treaty provides that up to 20% (if you are taxed that high) goes to the US. Then you pay Canadian taxes, but get credit for the US tax you paid. All when you withdraw, of course.

Have you heard something else? If so, where can I find info?

Bosco
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:54 AM   #6
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telly
I've been thinking about that with today's news on the Yuan... We are China's biggest market. They are rolling in dollars from the extreme imbalance of trade with us. What can they do now, other than continuing to buy US debt with the dollars? If they try to make any extreme moves, won't they sink their own ship? They seem to like the Capitalist hand that feeds them... or is it their Communist hand that feeds us? URK!!
Well, first, this isn't an extreme move. They are taking it pretty slowly. I've heard that this particular move might cause a 2% decline in the dollar.

Second, at the end of last year, they held about $260B of our debt. That's about 3% of their GDP. If it went to zero, they would feel it, but a drop of 10% or so wouldn't even register as a bee sting.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 01:13 AM   #7
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

I would suggest that this will increase the value of hard assets, such as metals, oil and timber, as Chindia become the emerging "value added" manufacturers in the ongoing global trade war that has been gaining momentum since the Marshall Plan created a viable EU trade forum half a century ago. I am heavily invested in metal and mining stocks. I am not smart. If I had sought the advice of
any competent CFP about my holdings five years ago, he would have told me, in short, easy to understand words, that I was stupid.
I am at best a perfect analogy of a clock that is at least right twice a day, since I held these positions in one form or another for at least ten years. I worked in the mining and oil & gas sector so I invested in companies I thought I understood. For the bulk of the decades i have struggled to hold onto the 5-15% return. The last three years have made these stodgy holdings (XOM, PD, BHP) look like I had a plan. I am pleased with these commodity positions, but the reality is that paper money is currency, not wealth, and government fiat can and does render currencies worthless with historical regularity. This is part of the same driver for real estate, since its a form of hard asset investment.

I would suggest that the next big global investment will be mid-west black soil farmland. There will be plenty of hungry mouths to feed and money is worth little when the choice is hunger or 'currency".

...and do your own due dilligence.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 01:42 AM   #8
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

The famous "Walmart effect" will take a beating and true inflation will come to the Western world. Did we really believe that just because some Chinese was willing to sell us cheap widgets that inflation was "low"? Most of us know better, and commodities/metals speak their clear language about inflation.

But China is smart enough to make this a VERY slow process - no need to kill the goose buying the "golden" eggs...

Investments in all of Asia and commodities/metals seems to have been re-confirmed in my view. Cheers!
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 06:13 AM   #9
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

In Thailand, the $ dropped about .75 Baht; from approximately B42 to B41.25 per USD.

The adjustment was relatively small, but a stronger Chinese RMB (Yuan) will help a bit in offsetting the price of imported oil. (Oil is still priced in USD.) Thailand and other SE Asian nations seem to welcome the stronger RMB, even though their curriencies are strengening as well.

From what I can gather, the Chinese have approximately $1 trillion stashed in US Treasuries, so every time they allow the RMB to appreciate, they also give themselves a "haircut" so to speak. In anycase, I don't look for the RMB to surge in value. More like a slow and steady rise. Time will tell.

Interesting article by Paul Krugman:

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/22/op...html?th&emc=th

But all is not lost, I can still treat my girlfriend to supper for $2 USD.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 07:29 AM   #10
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

I think that the most likely immediate effect is commodity price increases as China becomes decoupled with the USD. Over the longer term, there may be significant offsetting factors. Will the revaluation to the Yuan over time sap China's growth? Will the stimulation of US exports by virtue of less distortion in the currency markets help shrink the US trade gap? Both of these things might reduce commodity nflation effects in USD. I don't know what the net effect will be. Either way, I like my hedges in the form of PRCDX, GIM and EFA (totalling ~25% of my portfolio).

I suspect Walmart is boned, although they might escape disaster by moving production to other areas of the world (India, some parts of Africa, etc.).
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 07:43 AM   #11
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Quote:
I think that the most likely immediate effect is commodity price increases as China becomes decoupled with the USD.
For sure and a small decline in dollar so it intl' attractive since currency movements (assuming investment is unhedged) are one part of your return/loss.

Going out a ways I think it is a step in the right direction for China and US. It had to be done just a matter of when.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:25 PM   #12
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

So, the meaning I have gotten from this thread, to summarize is:

Buy commodities as a hedge, move a bigger percent of investments to Intl/Emerging markets (though I am not sure if these are currency hedged if you go ETF) or move to Canada. All of these are doable, except the Canada one at the moment

Does anyone know if it is possible to store money in US banks in a different currency? Say for instance I really felt strongly about the dollar heading downwards over a long term period. Could I say to my bank, please convert it to Euros at the current exchange rate, and keep it in Euros?




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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:38 PM   #13
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olav23
Does anyone know if it is possible to store money in US banks in a different currency?
http://www.everbank.com/
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:39 PM   #14
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Yes, you can. *Damn someone help me with the bank that allows you to deposit money linked to other currencies. *Online bank and I got the name from a Forbes article several months back.

Is Wab good or what?
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 12:45 PM   #15
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

He's the Wiz, and nobody beats him! [hopefully obvious seinfeld reference]

Seriously, you guys rock!

Check it:
http://www.everbank.com/canvas.asp?i...wc_fx_renminbi

I'm storing everything I have in RMB. Good idea? Conversely, put it all in the Vietnamese Dong, just because it's fun to say.

Screw diversification!!!!
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-22-2005, 02:31 PM   #16
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Concerning Everbank - you will pay a 3/4% (over spot) fee for conversion into the foreign currency, and a 3/4% fee for a conversion out of the foreign currency back into dollars.* *They also offer CD's in foreign currency some of which pay interest (~1 to 2%) but again the conversion fees apply.* The CD's can be rolled without conversion.* *
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-23-2005, 07:54 AM   #17
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Has anyone looked at what is happening with the yen? It seems the dollar has been strengthening against the yen from 104 in May to 111 now. This seems strange. Last thing I heard was that Japan was buying lots of dollars try stop pressure for a stronger yen.
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-23-2005, 09:46 PM   #18
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Seems a bit exorbitant, but I guess I could consider it a .75% expense ratio!
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-24-2005, 08:21 AM   #19
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Olav; no ETFs (that I know of) does currency hedging so you will get that currency diversification with any foreign ETF. Cheers!
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?
Old 07-24-2005, 11:12 AM   #20
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Re: China dollar peg removed. What now?

Must be another way than everbank... futures markets? Probably too expensive for the individual investor, if have to keep rolling over the futures.
I'd want to be prepared to hold the position for years, and wouldn't want to give up interest for that time. A China short term bond fund would be nice.

OECD's PPP data omits China: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/48/18/18598721.pdf
Anyone have link to Yuan's PPP? Better yet, that graph of PPP vs. PerCapitaGDP? Can't find it, maybe no longer available.
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