Jesse elaborates on the Telegraph’s article on China and US money printing. – Ilene
Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain
China is saying many things which are true.
They are also omitting many things that are key to the cause of our financial problems. They bought the silence of a succession of US political administrations over their blatant currency manipulation in support of trade subsidies, including the outright contributions to Clinton and Gore, and the cronyism with Bush.
China is a significant part of the problem, and like so many dogs that Wall Street helps to set up to further their gains, this one refuses to wag its tail on command.
The blowback on the US dollar will be significant.
The US Federal Reserve’s policy of printing money to buy Treasury debt threatens to set off a serious decline of the dollar and compel China to redesign its foreign reserve policy, according to a top member of the Communist hierarchy.
Cheng Siwei, former vice-chairman of the Standing Committee and now head of China’s green energy drive, said Beijing was dismayed by the Fed’s recourse to "credit easing".
"We hope there will be a change in monetary policy as soon as they have positive growth again," he said at the Ambrosetti Workshop, a policy gathering on Lake Como.
"If they keep printing money to buy bonds it will lead to inflation, and after a year or two the dollar will fall hard. Most of our foreign reserves are in US bonds and this is very difficult to change, so we will diversify incremental reserves into euros, yen, and other currencies," he said. (China is already a strong buyer in the precious metals markets, and is encouraging its citizens to buy gold and silver as well – Jesse)
China’s reserves are more than – $2 trillion, the world’s largest.
"Gold is definitely an alternative, but when we buy, the price goes up. We have to do it carefully so as not to stimulate the markets," he added. (The short interest being held by three or four US banks is grown remarkably large. As Barrick gold claimed in their lawsuit with JP Morgan by Blanchard, they are being backstopped by the US government. Larry Summers has been a long time proponent of controlling the price of gold to influence longer term interest rates. See his paper on Gibson’s Paradox. Greenspan understood the same relationship all too well, as does Bernanke. – Jesse)
The comments suggest that China has become the driving force in the gold market and can be counted on to buy whenever there is a price dip, putting a floor under any correction. (The other central banks of the world have put a significant halt to their own selling, now realizing that the US Federal Reserve and Treasury are fighting a losing battle. – Jesse)
Mr Cheng said the Fed’s loose monetary policy was stoking an unstable asset boom in China. "If we raise interest rates, we will be flooded with hot money. We have to wait for them. If they raise, we raise. (How about releasing the peg to the US dollar and allowing the yuan to appreciate, dampening your exports, Uncle Cheng? Along with encouraging domestic consumption and higher wages. – Jesse)
"Credit in China is too loose. We have a bubble in the housing market and in stocks so we have to be very careful, because this could fall down." (Apparently the Chinese do not lie to their people yet about the true state of their economy. Greenspan and Geithner have much to teach them. – Jesse)
Mr Cheng said China had learned from the West that it is a mistake for central banks to target retail price inflation and take their eye off assets.
"This is where Greenspan went wrong from 2000 to 2004," he said. "He thought everything was alright because inflation was low, but assets absorbed the liquidity." (He didn’t go wrong. He did not care. He was willfully blind. He was brought in to the banking ponzi scheme in 1996 – Jesse)
Mr Cheng said China had lost 20m jobs as a result of the crisis and advised the West not to over-estimate the role that his country can play in global recovery. (We should have NO illusion about China doing anything to promote imports and growth for anyone but themselves, ever. It is not a free market, it is a command economy with a strong mercantilist bent. – Jesse)
China’s task is to switch from export dependency to internal consumption, but that requires a "change in the ideology of the Chinese people" to discourage excess saving. "This is very difficult". (No it is not. It is hard because the Chinese elites are afraid to lose control of the country to a growing merchant and middle class. – Jesse)
Mr Cheng said the root cause of global imbalances is spending patterns in US (and UK) and China. (One of the root causes was the devaluation of the Chinese yuan in the mid-1990’s, and the allowance thereafter of China into most favored nation trading status with the US after making considerable contributions to Bill Clinton and Al Gore, through the Chinese military. Remember that scandal? – Jesse)
"The US spends tomorrow’s money today," he said. "We Chinese spend today’s money tomorrow. That’s why we have this financial crisis…."
(Perhaps it is more correct to say that we have this crisis because statist governments and crony capitalists continually interfere with market mechanisms, creating unintended consequences and downtream crises that are growing increasingly severe and systemically threatening. – Jesse)