Posts com Tag ‘2009’

By Jason Simpkins
Managing Editor 
Money Morning

Emerging markets, led by China and Russia, plan to jointly challenge the U.S. dollar’s role as the world’s sole benchmark currency at the April 2 meeting of the Group 20 nations – a move that underscores the currency’s weakness and fading support around the world.

The creation of a new reserve currency to be issued by international financial institutions was one of the measures Russia proposed to the G20 on March 16, ahead of the group’s summit next week.

Russian authorities previously met with financial ministers and central bankers from China, Brazil and India on March 13. The group issued its first-ever joint communiqué ahead of the G20 finance ministers last Saturday, March 14.  The joint statement did not mention a new currency like Russia proposed, but an unidentified source told Reutersthat the issue was discussed.

Chinese policymakers confirmed as much today (Monday) when Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People’s Bank of China, released an essay entitled “Reform of the International Monetary System” on the BOC’s Web site.

Without explicitly mentioning to the U.S. dollar, Zhou asked what kind of international reserve currency does the world needs to secure global financial stability and facilitate economic growth.

According to Zhou, the dollar’s unique status as the world’s primary currency reserve has resulted in increasingly frequent financial crises ever since the collapse of the Bretton Woods system in 1971.

“The price is becoming increasingly higher, not only for the users, but also for the issuers of the reserve currencies,” Zhou said. “Although crisis may not necessarily be an intended result of the issuing authorities, it is an inevitable outcome of the institutional flaws.”

Zhou called for the “re-establishment of a new and widely accepted reserve currency with a stable valuation” to replace the U.S. dollar – a credit-based national currency. The central bank governor noted that the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Right (SDR) should be given special consideration. 

Created by the IMF in 1969 to support the Bretton Woods fixed exchange rate system, the SDR was redefined in 1973 as a basket of currencies. Today the SDR consists of the euro, Japanese yen, pound sterling, and U.S. dollar.

“The SDR has the features and potential to act as a super-sovereign reserve currency,” said Zhou. “Moreover, an increase in SDR allocation would help the Fund address its resources problem and the difficulties in the voice and representation reform. Therefore, efforts should be made to push forward a SDR allocation.”

Zhou proposed the following actions to move the SDR in a direction that could better accommodate demand for a more stable reserve currency:

  • Set up a settlement system between the SDR and other currencies. Therefore, the SDR, which is now only used between governments and international institutions, could become a widely accepted means of payment in international trade and financial transactions.
  • Actively promote the use of the SDR in international trade, commodities pricing, investment and corporate bookkeeping. This will help enhance the role of the SDR, and will effectively reduce the fluctuation of prices of assets denominated in national currencies and related risks.
  • Create financial assets denominated in the SDR to increase its appeal. The introduction of SDR-denominated securities, which is being studied by the IMF, will be a good start.
  • Further improve the valuation and allocation of the SDR. The basket of currencies forming the basis for SDR valuation should be expanded to include currencies of all major economies, and the GDP may also be included as a weight. The allocation of the SDR can be shifted from a purely calculation-based system to one backed by real assets, such as a reserve pool, to further boost market confidence in its value.

Many analysts view the campaign by emerging markets for a new reserve currency as an attempt by to gain more control in the IMF, which has traditionally been dominated by richer countries. But the new currency campaign is also further evidence that Beijing is becoming less and less comfortable with its large holdings of U.S. assets, namely Treasuries. 

Concerns about the dollar losing value have escalated in recent weeks as the U.S. Federal Reserve pursues a policy of quantitative easing in an effort of taming the financial crisis.

We have lent a huge amount of money to the United States,” Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said earlier this month. “Of course, we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little bit worried. I request the U.S. to maintain its good credit, to honor its promises and to guarantee the safety of China’s assets.”

China is the world leader with $2 trillion in foreign currency holdings. About half of that is held in U.S. Treasuries and notes issued by other government-affiliated agencies, such as Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE).

Half of Russia’s currency reserves – the world’s third-largest stockpile – consist of U.S. dollars, as well.

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WASHINGTON (AFP) — US President Barack Obama has defended the dollar as “extraordinarily strong” and rejected China’s call for a new global currency as an alternative to the dollar.

He said investors considered the United States “the strongest economy in the world with the most stable political system in the world” even as it was reeling from a prolonged recession stemming from financial turmoil.

People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan had called for a replacement of the dollar, installed as the reserve currency after World War II, with a different standard run by the International Monetary Fund.

“As far as confidence in the US economy or the dollar, I would just point out that the dollar is extraordinarily strong right now,” Obama told a White House press conference on Tuesday.

He said that although the United States was “going through a rough patch” at present, it enjoyed a “great deal of confidence” from investors.

“So you don’t have to take my word for it,” he said.

“I don’t believe there is a need for a global currency,” Obama said, in what appeared to be a break from tradition among US presidents not to comment directly on the dollar’s value.

Zhou suggested the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights, a currency basket comprising dollars, euros, sterling and yen, could serve as a super-sovereign reserve currency, saying it would not be easily influenced by the policies of individual countries.

China is the largest creditor to the United States, being the top holder of US Treasury bonds worth 739.6 billion dollars as of January, according to US figures. It is also the world’s largest holder of US dollars as a reserve currency, at more than one trillion dollars.

Zhou’s comments came just two weeks after Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, in a rare expression of concern, called on US economic planners to safeguard Chinese assets.

“We have lent huge amounts of money to the United States. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets,” Wen said as the United States grappled with the worst financial turmoil since the Great Depression.

The latest Chinese concern came as the dollar took a beating following the Federal Reserve’s decision last week to buy up to 300 billion dollars in long-term US Treasury bonds and boost its purchases of mortgage securities by 750 billion dollars in an effort to revive the ailing economy.

The decision, according to foreign exchange dealers, made US assets less attractive to investors worried that the Fed move would end up debasing the world’s reserve currency.

Despite the financial meltdown at home, the dollar has been mostly regarded as “safe haven” by investors averting risks amid a global economic slump.

Before Obama spoke, the dollar ended higher Tuesday against key currencies.

The euro fell to 1,3469 dollars in late New York trading from 1,3617 a day earlier while the greenback rose to 97.88 yen from 97.13.

US Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Tuesday also defended the dollar at a congressional hearing.

At the hearing, a lawmaker asked the two financial chiefs: “Would you categorically renounce the United States moving away from the dollar and going to a global currency as suggested by China?”

Geithner immediately responded, “I would.”

“And the chair?” the lawmaker asked, turning to Fed chairman Bernanke.

“I would also,” Bernanke said.

The idea of a global currency determined by multilateral organizations is not new, said John Lipsky, the IMF’s first deputy managing director.

“But it’s a serious proposal,” he said in Washington.

And he hastened to add, “I don’t think even the proponents think it as a short-term issue but as a longer-term issue that merits serious study and consideration.”

EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said the dollar would remain unchallenged as the top reserve currency even as emerging economies such as China play a more critical role in the global economy.

He said, “I don’t expect major structural changes in the role that the dollar plays today as a reserve currency.”

The debate over the dollar’s role came ahead of the G20 summit of developing and industrialized nations on April 2 in London, where world leaders and international organizations, including the IMF, are to discuss reforming the financial system.

Russia has also proposed the summit discuss creating a supranational reserve currency. The IMF created the SDR as an international reserve asset in 1969, but it is only used by governments and international institutions.

Clinton at Davos

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Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium

Sei que parece banal, um filme para crianças. Todavia, o filme me surpreendeu. A Loja do Sr. Magorium é uma loja mágica (ou maçônica?) e possui personagens fictícios segundo o contador, porém, segundo o dono da loja são realmente verdadeiros. Um desses personagens é Yaweh entre muitas outras simbologias interessantes, no melhor esquema hollywood, para mostrar que o amor que surge da fé na vida  é a fórmula de onde vem o poder mágico do ser humano. Sem contar que o accountant aprende no final que o mundo não é o recebe e manda “formulários”, mas sim a crença num cubo de madeira (ou seria a kaaba?). Ele conta apenas o final da história do “dono da loja”. Muito Interessante…. Quem quiser se aprofundar na parte “mágica” das mensagens subliminares do filme, sugiro clicar nestas palavras: tetragramaton, kaaba, 



Ontem vi o dito filme conspiratório fantástico humanista verossímil. Em termos gerais, filmaço – 3h de cadeira sem reclamar. Faz um bom tempo que eu não ia ao cinema, porque não custo ficar 3horas sem fumar, então vejo NET HD, torrents, etc, mas fiquei 3h sem lembrar do cigarro (nos últimos 5, quando já tinha acabado o que interessa, desconcentrei e lembrei do cigarro). Porém, a crítica do portal UAI que postei na sexta é pertinente e, na minha opinião, descreveu o mesmo sentimento que senti, imediatamente ao final do  filme, embora sem conhecer tanto a série, mais de orelhada: ” Não se preocupa, também, com a crônica do cotidiano de um quarteirão em Nova York – o que desumaniza a história, diminuindo nossa identificação com ela. ” Poderia ter sido muito melhor, embora tenha seu lado de realismo cruel, com um final meio feliz (na minha opinião muito infeliz) quase todos são felizes para sempre com um mundo de bosta e vamo lá que amanhã é dia de “branco”. Mas, realmente, o filme é um primor por levantas questões fundamentais e resumir uma série de 12 edições de revista em quadrinho. Como sempre a wilipedia ajuda pra quem quiser viajar no assunto.

Watchmen – Trailer

Publicado: março 6, 2009 por Yogi em Tudo
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Watchmen estréia hoje, 06.03.09. Embora a crítica abaixo seja ácida e muito instigante, só nos resta ver o filme. Veja trecho da crítica do portal Uai. 

Paranoia política

Depois de toda a longa novela da adaptação de Watchmen, a história chega às telas pelas mãos de Zack Snyder, responsável por outra versão de clássico de quadrinhos, 300, que alcançou bastante sucesso. Snyder preserva a paranoia política de Alan Moore de maneira quase integral, e adota uma linguagem visual arrojada, que praticamente transcreve para a tela os jogos de imagem de Moore e Dave Gibbons, como se usasse a minissérie como um storyboard para a criação do filme. É só na estrutura que o diretor se acovarda. Prefere deixar de fora a história em quadrinhos dentro da história – o que impede o filme de ter o tom trágico da minissérie. Não se preocupa, também, com a crônica do cotidiano de um quarteirão em Nova York – o que desumaniza a história, diminuindo nossa identificação com ela. E, por fim, altera um elemento crucial no clímax da trama. A alteração, se conduz a narrativa na mesma direção que o original, reduz o paroxismo de absurdo que Moore e Gibbons construíram. Não é a primeira vez que Snyder se acovarda frente a uma obra-prima. Em 300, temeroso de que o público não apreciasse uma história essencialmente masculina, acrescentou uma trama paralela, centrada na rainha de Esparta. O público mais observador deve ter notado que são as piores partes do filme. Do Portal Uai.

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