Article: Japan analysts says US Treasury unconcerned over yen manipulation

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Japan analysts says US Treasury unconcerned over yen manipulation

Eamonn Sheridana, 19 April 2021

Japan is on the ‘monitor’ list having satisfied 2 of the 3 US criteria, along with other countries. You can find more on the report here:
US drops Switzerland and Vietnam from FX manipulator designation status

But, says Mizuho, the focus is not on the yen but rather on emerging economies:

US likely to prioritize the Mexican peso or Asian currencies (excl-yen) the US report cited IMF analysts saying the yen was largely in line with fundamentals and made no mention of the yen’s weakness so far in 2021
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Article: US Treasury says no major trading partner manipulates currency

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US Treasury says no major trading partner manipulates currency

Xinhua, 17 April 2021

WASHINGTON — The US Treasury Department on Friday said that no major trading partner of the United States meets the criteria as a currency manipulator, but Vietnam, Switzerland and China’s Taiwan will be under enhanced monitoring for their currency practices.

In its semiannual Report on Macroeconomic and Foreign Exchange Policies of Major Trading Partners of the United States, the Treasury Department concluded that Vietnam, Switzerland and Taiwan met all three criteria for enhanced currency analysis under the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 during the four quarters through December 2020. Continue reading “Article: US Treasury says no major trading partner manipulates currency”

Article: Bank of Thailand Unfazed by U.S. Currency Watchlist Inclusion

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Bank of Thailand Unfazed by U.S. Currency Watchlist Inclusion

Suttinee Yuvejwattana, 17 April 2021

The Bank of Thailand has responded to the U.S. decision to keep the nation on watch for currency manipulation by asserting it has stepped into the market only to curb volatility in the baht.

The central bank is committed to exchange-rate flexibility, with “interventions limited only to curbing excessive volatility and rapid movements of the baht on both sides,” Assistant Governor Chantavarn Sucharitakul said in a statement Saturday, adding that “Thailand has never used the exchange rate as a tool to gain an unfair trade advantage.” Continue reading “Article: Bank of Thailand Unfazed by U.S. Currency Watchlist Inclusion”

Article: U.S. trade chief voices concern to Vietnam over currency practices

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U.S. trade chief voices concern to Vietnam over currency practices

Eric Beech, 01 April 2021

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, in a call on Thursday with Vietnam’s minister of industry and trade, highlighted U.S. concerns about Vietnam’s currency practices, a USTR statement said.

Tai and the Vietnamese minister Tran Tuan Anh also “discussed U.S. concerns on illegal timber practices, digital trade and agriculture,” the statement said.

Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade in a statement on Friday said Vietnam and the United States “will continue to actively cooperate to comprehensively address the concerns to maintain a stable trade relation.” Continue reading “Article: U.S. trade chief voices concern to Vietnam over currency practices”

Article: US Chides Vietnam Over Currency, But Makes No Tariff Threat

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US Chides Vietnam Over Currency, But Makes No Tariff Threat

Alex Lawson, 15 January 2021

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative found that Vietnam’s currency manipulation is unfairly hindering U.S. businesses but held off on teeing up new tariffs against Hanoi on Friday, leaving a final decision in the case up to the incoming Biden administration.

After a three-month investigation, the USTR found that Vietnam’s persistent undervaluation of its currency, paired with its more recent intervention in foreign exchange markets, artificially lowered the prices of Vietnamese exports to the U.S., leaving U.S. producers at a disadvantage. Continue reading “Article: US Chides Vietnam Over Currency, But Makes No Tariff Threat”

Article: Analysis: A currency manipulator tag for Switzerland may not deter FX approach

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Analysis: A currency manipulator tag for Switzerland may not deter FX approach

Saikat Chatterjee, John Revill and David Lawder, 16 December 2020

LONDON/ZURICH/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The threat of being named a currency manipulator by the U.S. Treasury may be an embarrassment for Switzerland, but even if the country does get the tag, it likely will have little effect on the Swiss National Bank’s monetary policy.

Switzerland is expected to meet all three criteria for such designation in the long-overdue U.S. Treasury report on the foreign currency practices of major trading partners. The Treasury has some discretion on whether to issue such a label, and the coronavirus pandemic, which has thrown trade and capital flows into chaos this year, could be a factor.

There would be no automatic punishment with a label, though U.S. law requires Washington to demand negotiations with designated countries.

Vietnam, Thailand and Taiwan this year have also been in violation https://www.cfr.org/article/tracking-currency-manipulation of the Treasury’s three manipulation criteria: a $20 billion-plus bilateral trade surplus with the United States, foreign currency intervention exceeding 2% of GDP and a global current account surplus exceeding 2% of GDP.

Currency experts expect Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to issue the report within days, just over a month before he leaves office.

“The subtle implication of being put on this list is that you eventually could come under sanctions, and that puts pressure on these countries not to weaken their currencies so much, or to allow strengthening,” said Win Thin, global head of Currency Strategy at BBH.

But he said that in Switzerland’s case, as the exchange rate is its main tool for fighting deflation, “they may say, ‘Well, tough’”.

The Swiss central bank is firmly under the Treasury’s focus after spending 90 billion Swiss francs ($101.50 billion) on foreign currency intervention in the first half of 2020 amid pandemic-driven safe-haven inflows.

The SNB has long argued it is not trying to weaken the franc to gain a trade advantage. Instead, it aims only to stem the appreciation of its currency to head off the threat of deflation, which runs contrary to its goal of price stability.

“Switzerland has always been treated as a special case when it comes to exchange rate policy and even the U.S. Treasury has conceded in the past that Switzerland’s economic situation is “distinctive” and that its monetary policy options are limited by its small stock of domestic assets,” said David Oxley, a senior European economist at Capital Economics.

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Article: U.S. Treasury labels Switzerland, Vietnam as currency manipulators

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U.S. Treasury labels Switzerland, Vietnam as currency manipulators

Reuters Staff, 16 December 2020

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Treasury labeled Switzerland and Vietnam as currency manipulators on Wednesday and added three new names to a watch list of countries it suspects of taking measures to devalue their currencies against the dollar.

In what may be one of the final broadsides to international trading partners delivered by the departing administration of U.S. President Donald Trump, the Treasury said that through June 2020 both Switzerland and Vietnam had intervened in currency markets to prevent effective balance of payments adjustments.

Furthermore, in its semi-annual currency manipulation report, the Treasury said Vietnam had acted to gain “unfair competitive advantage in international trade as well.” Continue reading “Article: U.S. Treasury labels Switzerland, Vietnam as currency manipulators”

Article: Swiss franc climbs after US adds it to ‘manipulation’ watchlist

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Swiss franc climbs after US adds it to ‘manipulation’ watchlist

Sam Jones in Zurich and Eva Szalay in London , 15 January 2020

The Swiss franc nudged up to a near three-year high against the euro on Tuesday as markets anticipated the move would limit the Swiss National Bank’s appetite for aggressive action to try to hold down its currency in future.

“The report is a warning shot to the SNB,” said George Saravelos, global co-head of currency research at Deutsche Bank, adding that the franc is likely to push higher from here. It now trades around CHF1.08 against the euro.

The US called on Bern on Monday to “more forcefully support domestic economic activity” by spending money and reducing the country’s already low tax burden, in what was an unusual swipe at a sovereign nation’s financial affairs. “Despite borrowing costs for the Swiss government being among the lowest in the world, fiscal policy remains underutilised, even within the constraints of Switzerland’s existing fiscal rules,” the US Treasury said in its assessment.

The SNB said on Tuesday that its interventions were transparent, and “motivated purely by monetary policy . . . aimed at addressing the negative consequence for inflation and the economy through a highly valued franc.”

“They are not aimed at giving Switzerland advantages by undervaluing the Swiss franc,” it added.

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Article: Fact check: Trump says Blumenthal lied (he did) and bragged (he didn’t)

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Fact check: Trump says Blumenthal lied (he did) and bragged (he didn’t)

Jane C. Timm, 30 September 2018

President Donald Trump attacked Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., for misleading voters, making some false claims of his own in the process.

“Senator Richard Blumenthal must talk about his fraudulent service in Vietnam, where for 12 years he told the people of Connecticut, as their Attorney General, that he was a great Marine War Hero. Talked about his many battles of near death, but was never in Vietnam. Total Phony!” Trump tweeted. Continue reading “Article: Fact check: Trump says Blumenthal lied (he did) and bragged (he didn’t)”