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Dollar rebound delivers costly shock to investors (including Warren Buffett)
Financial Times ^ | August 14

Posted on 08/14/2005 6:17:50 PM PDT by Uncle Joe Cannon

Dollar rebound delivers costly shock to investors

By Steve Johnson in London Sun Aug 14, 3:45 PM ET

Pension funds, trend-following hedge funds and private investors are all believed to have been hit this year because of the US dollar's unexpected strength. ADVERTISEMENT

But more nimble investors, including many hedge funds, are now believed to have recouped most of their losses.

The dollar fell by 38.7 per cent against the euro in the three years to 2004 as worries over the twin US external and budget deficits intensified. The sell-off was particularly acute in last year's fourth quarter, leading many in the markets to anticipate more losses this year and thus build big short-dollar positions.

But the dollar has proved robust, rallying from $1.356 against the euro to $1.188 in July, before slipping back recently to $1.243.

"The whole world expected the dollar to go down [in January], but there was no one left to sell the dollar," said James Binny, director of FX analytics and risk advisory at ABN Amro.

Berkshire Hathaway, the investment group run by Warren Buffett, has been a high-profile victim of the dollar's fightback.

Berkshire's $21.5bn of short-dollar forward contracts produced a pre-tax loss of $926m in the first half of 2005, eating into the $2bn gains made from shorting the dollar in the previous three years. Hedge funds also made sharp initial losses. BNP Paribas's FX Funds Index, which tracks the performance of hedge funds and commodity trading advisers, suggests the sector lost 4.4 per cent in January.

However, data from the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission indicates that short-term speculators swung to being long on dollars by the spring, although these positions are now being liquidated. Consequently, BNP's index indicates that by June hedge funds had cut year-to-date losses to 1.7 per cent.

Yet many funds still face significant losses. Dummy portfolios run by ABN's Mr Binny, designed to imitate popular hedge fund trading styles, suggest that trend-following hedge funds typically lost 7.4 per cent in the year to July, while short volatility funds which suffer when currencies break out of their trading ranges lost 6.4 per cent. Yield and value-seeking funds are likely to have made small gains.

Avinash Persaud has been another victim, with the currency hedge fund he managed for Global Asset Management closing in April after losses. He thinks this year's losers were "clever" investors who anticipated fresh dollar weakness, with "dumb" investors largely "non-profit maximisers" who stick with the dollar through thick and thin making the gains.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Extended News
KEYWORDS: buffett; dollar; hedgefunds; pensionfunds

1 posted on 08/14/2005 6:17:51 PM PDT by Uncle Joe Cannon
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

Less money for Buffoon to spend on the Dimwit Party. Hope Soros took it in the shorts too.


2 posted on 08/14/2005 6:19:12 PM PDT by peyton randolph (Warning! It is illegal to fatwah a camel in all 50 states)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
< Max Cady> HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! </ Max Cady>
3 posted on 08/14/2005 6:19:24 PM PDT by CzarNicky (The problem with bad ideas is that they seemed like good ideas at the time.)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

could the big boys be hearing thw whisper numbers that the Euro really is only a paper tiger.


4 posted on 08/14/2005 6:20:44 PM PDT by longtermmemmory (VOTE!)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
I told those jackasses this would happen. The fundamentals are too good.

Yes, Bush is pissing away money like a drunken sailor, but relative to other currencies the US dollar still looks pretty nice. It is not that our currency is being managed well so much as it is that foreign economies are being managed badly.

5 posted on 08/14/2005 6:21:49 PM PDT by tortoise (All these moments lost in time, like tears in the rain.)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
Economics 101 for Dummies:

Rising interest rates mean a stregthening dollar.

That is all for today. Hope you took notes.

6 posted on 08/14/2005 6:22:22 PM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
The dollar fell by 38.7 per cent against the euro in the three years to 2004 as worries over the twin US external and budget deficits intensified.

What hooey. The dollar went down because the FED lower rates to 1 percent, and they did so in part to lower the dollar's value to boost exports.

Only idiots in this market, believed the "twin deficit" scam put out by the MSM. I just flies in the face of the historical record. I am so tired of hearing this BS out of "experts" who should know better.

7 posted on 08/14/2005 6:25:25 PM PDT by CasearianDaoist
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To: Dog Gone

Eat it Warrren.


8 posted on 08/14/2005 6:25:29 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

George Soros and Warren Buffet have been waging an active campaign against the US economy following the same game plan Soros used to "break the Bank of England" several years ago.

They have been leading the charge in speculating on currency and oil in a concerted effort to destroy us. They still plan to make a profit, as well as advance their neo-socialist agenda (socialism hell for the little people, so long as they stay on top themselves - you know, like Cuba and Venezuela).


9 posted on 08/14/2005 6:25:52 PM PDT by Phsstpok (There are lies, damned lies, statistics and presentation graphics, in descending order of truth)
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To: Dog Gone

Buy gun and gold stocks...

SWB

RGR

GG
USGL- pure spec...


10 posted on 08/14/2005 6:26:37 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

I like what Ronald Reagan said, "We should make the dollar sound, respected again, not have it yo-yo in value as it has been for the last few years. The dollar should be worth a dollar today; it should be worth a dollar tomorrow."



11 posted on 08/14/2005 6:29:18 PM PDT by FreeRep
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
Go to any website that has a dollar contract chart (dxy is the symbol). You will see that the dollar index made a triple bottom earlier this year and then, about a month ago, it crossed above its 200 day moving average.

If Warren Buffet kept his dollar short after that he is an idiot with a capital I. If he did and the dollar reverses and capsizes, he not only is the greatest genius trader of all time he is clairvoyant beyond anything any mortal can do.

It was a Friday afternoon when the dxy went above its 200 day and I didn't take the trade for that reason, figuring the overseas traders would drill me Sunday night and I could get in Monday. Stupid. It took off like a rocket.

12 posted on 08/14/2005 6:34:00 PM PDT by groanup (shred for Ian)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

Soros and Buffett made the mistake of betting on their political and ideological convictions.


13 posted on 08/14/2005 6:39:36 PM PDT by Brilliant
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To: Dog Gone

Economics 101 for Dummies:
Rising interest rates mean a stregthening dollar.

That is all for today. Hope you took notes."

Exactly. That and the fact the EU is not smart money play after all.


14 posted on 08/14/2005 6:49:06 PM PDT by iThinkBig
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To: samadams2000

Eat it Warrren.

Buffet is no fool and he is long time holder of whatever he buys or shorts. He's bought millions of ounces of silver and it has yet to go up significantly in price but it will. Don't misjudge his shorting the dollar, it's headed down. He'll make big bucks on that too.


15 posted on 08/14/2005 6:50:03 PM PDT by jwh_Denver (The government said it? I believe it! Hehe hoho haha!)
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To: jwh_Denver

Im buying gold coins and silver. You?


16 posted on 08/14/2005 6:56:48 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: FreeRep
I like what Ronald Reagan said, "We should make the dollar sound, respected again, not have it yo-yo in value as it has been for the last few years. The dollar should be worth a dollar today; it should be worth a dollar tomorrow."

Precisely right. Such a simple and direct concept, so easily understood by folks on the street and in "fly-over country," but beyond the grasp of economists running the Fed.

17 posted on 08/14/2005 6:59:58 PM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: samadams2000
Depending on how much you have, now might be a good time to sell some of it off. Gold, at least, is at recent highs and gold trades against the value of the dollar.

As interest rates rise, dollars become more attractive than gold.

Buying now, absent some unforseen market shock that sends the dollar plummeting, seems like a fool's errand to me.

18 posted on 08/14/2005 7:09:01 PM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: Dog Gone

I hear you 3-4 % of the portfolio. Had a good run in SWB looks like it could continue. Rest per Bob Brinker.


19 posted on 08/14/2005 7:10:15 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: FreeRep
I like what Ronald Reagan said, "We should make the dollar sound, respected again, not have it yo-yo in value as it has been for the last few years. The dollar should be worth a dollar today; it should be worth a dollar tomorrow."

This Ronald Reagan guy should get off his MSNBC but and run for President!

We need this kind of vision today.

Let the plastering begin!

20 posted on 08/14/2005 7:16:59 PM PDT by EGPWS
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To: samadams2000

Ammo and medications might be a better long term investment


21 posted on 08/14/2005 7:30:29 PM PDT by vrwc0915
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To: vrwc0915

If you feel that way look at OLN...winchester ammo division is going nuts..and gub contracts on the horizon.


22 posted on 08/14/2005 7:38:18 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: samadams2000

I was thinking more along the lines of physical ammo and meds :)


23 posted on 08/14/2005 7:57:42 PM PDT by vrwc0915
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To: samadams2000

Right now I'm in gold stocks heavily along with commodities.


24 posted on 08/14/2005 7:58:12 PM PDT by jwh_Denver (The government said it? I believe it! Hehe hoho haha!)
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To: samadams2000
Im buying gold coins and silver. You?

I'm investing in shotgun shells and canned goods!

Mark

25 posted on 08/14/2005 8:02:43 PM PDT by MarkL (It was a shocking cock-up. The mice were furious!)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

Long term, lower risk savings trends at all levels would be more conservative and smart for our economy and our defense. The big bull and lurking bear can really bite.


26 posted on 08/14/2005 8:06:28 PM PDT by familyop ("Let us try" sounds better, don't you think? "Essayons" is so...Latin.)
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To: MarkL

OLN and CAR...should do it.


27 posted on 08/14/2005 8:07:27 PM PDT by samadams2000 (Pitchforks and Lanterns..with a smiley face!)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
"But the dollar has proved robust, rallying from $1.356 against the euro to $1.188 in July, before slipping back recently to $1.243."

Reuters currency information

http://today.reuters.com/Investing/Currencies.aspx

1 Euro = 1.2414 USD

"Data delayed at least 20 minutes."
28 posted on 08/14/2005 8:12:01 PM PDT by familyop ("Let us try" sounds better, don't you think? "Essayons" is so...Latin.)
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To: Dog Gone
Rising interest rates mean a stregthening dollar.

Yep, and isn't it funny how the article didn't mention that? Currency policy is set by the White House, and last December GWB signaled the end of his weak dollar policy when he said "Greenspan knows what to do."

29 posted on 08/14/2005 8:12:40 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon
Reuters currency information

http://today.reuters.com/Investing/Currencies.aspx

1 US $ = 0.8051 Euro

"Data delayed at least 20 minutes."
30 posted on 08/14/2005 8:16:15 PM PDT by familyop ("Let us try" sounds better, don't you think? "Essayons" is so...Latin.)
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To: EGPWS
I like what Ronald Reagan said, "We should make the dollar sound, respected again, not have it yo-yo in value as it has been for the last few years. The dollar should be worth a dollar today; it should be worth a dollar tomorrow."

Reagan was the best, but he whipsawed the dollar as much as any president, maybe more than any other. I would have to say that quote was from early in his presidency or even before.

31 posted on 08/14/2005 8:16:30 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: familyop

mark to read tomorrow


32 posted on 08/14/2005 8:17:45 PM PDT by RobFromGa (Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran-- what are we waiting for?)
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To: jwh_Denver

But aren't short contracts for a specific period?


33 posted on 08/14/2005 8:19:53 PM PDT by ImaGraftedBranch (God is my Fulcrum; prayer is my lever -- Saint Therese of Lisieux)
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To: Moonman62
Rising interest rates mean a stregthening dollar.

Yep, and isn't it funny how the article didn't mention that?

No, higher interest rates do not mean a stronger dollar. Check and you will find that the gold price was below $380/ounce in April, 2004, before the Fed began trumpeting its intent to raise short rates. Now the gold price is about $450. That's a loss of 18%+.

Currency policy is set by the White House, and last December GWB signaled the end of his weak dollar policy when he said "Greenspan knows what to do."

Again, not true. After the Treasury Secretary of Bush 41 jawboned Greenspan so doggedly to lower rates, without success, and Greenspan brought on a recession right at election time, Clinton made a deal that Treasury would let the Fed manage the dollar without second-guessing from Treasury. That hasn't changed under Bush 43, which is why we see no criticism of the Fed from the WH or even so much as a comment about whether they are doing a good or bad job.

34 posted on 08/14/2005 8:25:34 PM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: n-tres-ted
Clinton made a deal that Treasury would let the Fed manage the dollar without second-guessing from Treasury.

How do you explain the interventions Rubin did in 1995 and 1998?

35 posted on 08/14/2005 8:28:32 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: Moonman62
Reagan was the best, but he whipsawed the dollar as much as any president, maybe more than any other.

His "whipsawing" certainly put the economy on a gainful track though didn't it?

After all "Reaganomics" is STILL a divisive term used by the left.

Lest we forget the "tearing down of a wall" to boot.

36 posted on 08/14/2005 8:37:54 PM PDT by EGPWS
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To: vrwc0915
Ammo and medications might be a better long term investment

Med's to maintain and ammo in case the med's don't work?

37 posted on 08/14/2005 8:40:33 PM PDT by EGPWS
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To: EGPWS
Reagan tried to do what was practical. After Volcker raised rates incredibly high (which did help tremendously in restoring confidence in the dollar, but at the expense of a bad recession) and Reagan's policies kicked in, the dollar gained value very fast. That caused many companies to complain about being hurt by cheap imports. Reagan responded with the Plaza Accord which helped bring about the stock market crash of 1987.

In spite of those things Reagan's economic leadership was incredible, and brought about a recovery that didn't seem possible before he took office.

38 posted on 08/14/2005 8:49:07 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: Phsstpok

There was a third person that was shorting the dollar but I just can't remember who.
They were touting the euro, which they said would replace
the dollar in international finance.


39 posted on 08/14/2005 9:39:47 PM PDT by frannie (Be not afraid of tomorrow - God is already there!)
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To: Dog Gone
As interest rates rise, dollars become more attractive than gold.

The last 11 rate hikes are what is keeping the dollars For-ex rate where it is; the question is how much more can we afford? Can we afford the next 11 rate hikes?
40 posted on 08/14/2005 10:29:18 PM PDT by ARCADIA (Abuse of power comes as no surprise)
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To: Uncle Joe Cannon

Here's hoping Warren continues to take it in the "shorts" for turning his back on America to make a buck!


41 posted on 08/15/2005 4:36:40 AM PDT by conservativecorner
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To: samadams2000
I prefer to buy REAL guns and gold bullion.

In the old days they gave you individual pieces of paper for each stock, which could come in handy during a rectal crisis, but now they only give you one piece of paper and it is not very soft !!

Seriously, the physical has it is uses, and no lawyer can come in and take 42% of your guns and gold with a class action lawsuit.

F H
42 posted on 08/15/2005 4:59:13 AM PDT by Fish Hunter
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To: Moonman62

Please tell me what interventions Rubin made in '95 and '98.


43 posted on 08/15/2005 10:55:06 AM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: Moonman62
Reagan responded with the Plaza Accord which helped bring about the stock market crash of 1987.

No, the '87 crash occurred because the Plaza Accord unraveled when Greenspan was appointed chairman and promptly announced to the press that he saw no reason to support the dollar or keep it from "depreciating" over a period of years.

44 posted on 08/15/2005 11:02:52 AM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: n-tres-ted
That's why I said "helped bring about" the crash. Without the Plaza Accord, Greenspan's diarrhea of the mouth wouldn't have had much impact.
45 posted on 08/15/2005 11:15:44 AM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: n-tres-ted
Here's a table:

http://www.treas.gov/offices/international-affairs/esf/history/Intervention93-00.shtml

Here's the underlying story:

http://www.treas.gov/offices/international-affairs/esf/history/

The interventions in 1995 marked the beginning of the ruinous Clinton/Rubin strong dollar. Remember the Asian currency crisis?

46 posted on 08/15/2005 11:43:37 AM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: Moonman62
The Louvre Accord provided for stability among the values of the dollar, the mark and the yen, but without a stated value relative to gold or anything else. James Baker and Paul Volcker were moving towards a stated gold price for that accord, but it was scuttled by Greenspan.

As to interventions by the Treasury in the Fed's management of the dollar, there was no public intervention in the sense of the Treasury setting policy for the Fed. In my view, it's tood bad that is the case. Supply side economics has really helped the economy by influencing tax cuts promoted by the White House and enacted by Congress. But the Fed still is dominated completely by demand-side, central economic management theory.

47 posted on 08/15/2005 3:18:45 PM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: n-tres-ted
James Baker and Paul Volcker were moving towards a stated gold price for that accord, but it was scuttled by Greenspan.

That sounds an awful lot like the old Bretton Woods system which ended in disaster. Do you have a source?

As to interventions by the Treasury in the Fed's management of the dollar, there was no public intervention in the sense of the Treasury setting policy for the Fed.

The Fed answers to the president first and the congress second. It's not independent in practice. It's obvious that Greenspan went along with the strong dollar in the late 90's. He thought it would slow down the economy, because it would require him to keep interest rates relatively high, something he loves to do. He also went along with GWB's weak dollar policy probably because of 911, and to cover up one of the biggest economic mistakes ever made, his inverting the yield curve in 2000. So Greenspan was almost certainly consulted, but that doesn't mean the policy wasn't set by the White House, which it most certainly was.

But the Fed still is dominated completely by demand-side, central economic management theory.

The Fed, politicians and anyone else connected with the government. That's because demand side economics requires constant pump priming and management, which gives the appearance that lots of big bad government is necessary. With supply side economics you set it and forget it. Thousands of economists and bureaucrats could then be properly fired.

48 posted on 08/15/2005 3:49:03 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: Moonman62
James Baker and Paul Volcker were moving towards a stated gold price for that accord, but it was scuttled by Greenspan.

That sounds an awful lot like the old Bretton Woods system which ended in disaster. Do you have a source?

Try this, towards the end of part 1, in the section about the Crash of '87: http://www.polyconomics.com/supply.htm

The Fed answers to the president first and the congress second. It's not independent in practice. It's obvious that Greenspan went along with the strong dollar in the late 90's.

I would be very interested in any evidence to that effect. My understanding of the way the late '90s came down to deflation was Greenspan doing what he wanted and Rubin doing what Larry Summers told him. Rubin is not an economist, and simply repeated the mantra of a "strong dollar" so as not to cause a stock/bond market collapse through a weak dollar as occurred in '87. As to demand-siders, I think we agree they should be run out of town (at least out of the Fed).

49 posted on 08/15/2005 5:53:46 PM PDT by n-tres-ted (Remember November!)
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To: n-tres-ted
Try this, towards the end of part 1, in the section about the Crash of '87: http://www.polyconomics.com/supply.htm

I've read that page before. The problem wasn't the lack of a gold reference, but the lack of the will to stabilize the dollar.

I would be very interested in any evidence to that effect.

All I can tell you is to get all the information you can and keep an open mind. You can go all the way back to the birth of the Fed, or just look at the past 30 years or so. Get a chart of the dollar and look up what the Fed was doing during big changes in dollar value. Look at what would happen if there was a power struggle between the Fed and and the Executive branch. Each has a bully pulpit. Which is bigger? The Treasury can offset anything the Fed does. The president has the power of appointments, not just of the chairman, but most of the governors he has to work with.

Also, Congress created the Fed, it can also destroy it, or change the laws that govern its powers which it has done in the past.

My understanding of the way the late '90s came down to deflation was Greenspan doing what he wanted and Rubin doing what Larry Summers told him. Rubin is not an economist, and simply repeated the mantra of a "strong dollar" so as not to cause a stock/bond market collapse through a weak dollar as occurred in '87.

Keep in mind that Jude Wanniski isn't an economist either. He's a jornalist, a name dropper, and a big time self promoter who has praised Karl Marx and Louis Farakhan.

The strong dollar policy started in 1995, which I can understand because the dollar seemed weak at the time, but it was a policy that continued for five years in spite of all the obvious damage it caused such as currency crises around the globe. Rubin's not an economist, but he was a trader, and fairly intelligent even though he is a Democrat. I really would like a definitive answer on what his goal was with the strong dollar.

50 posted on 08/16/2005 12:52:11 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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