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Foreign Exchange

Bond Outlook February 15th

Continuing economic rebalancing has allowed many emerging and transition economies issue bonds in local currencies for international settlement. See our list for possible diversification.

Bond Outlook [by bridport & cie, February 15th 2006]

In a week when the USD has strengthened, the US stock markets risen and consumer spending expanding, it is difficult to maintain the doubts we have over the fundamentals of the US economy, but maintain them we must. Just why American households, after trimming their sails in December, should let them out again in January is beyond simple explanation, although one comment put it down to mild weather! We rather suspect Christmas bonuses, combined with resolute refusal to take account the gathering clouds of a 6% and growing external deficit, low employment participation, the public and private reductions in health, education and welfare benefits, the pension crisis and the end of the housing bubble. Even farming subsidies are coming to an end, as the US military spending removes room for budgetary manoeuvre.

 

The world is in fear that a US slowdown will cause a global recession, and certainly the Chinese and other dollar-peg countries are acting on that fear in supporting the USD. Yet the move from a unipolar to a tripolar world, long evoked in our Weekly as an essential step towards global economic balance, is now well underway.

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