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Nothing is Replacing the Dollar in Our Lifetimes

|Includes: ADRE, AIA, iShares China Large-Cap ETF (FXI)

 Will people pleeease stop incessantly talking about the possibility of China dropping the dollar as a reserve currency? What else are they going to use? Monopoly money? Taiwanese dollars? Collectable postage stamps? At nearly $2 trillion, the Middle Kingdom’s reserves are so enormous that no other currency in the world could accommodate the switch, and no other security offers the necessary depth and liquidity but Treasury bills. Chinese attempts to buy anything in size causes its price to immediately skyrocket, such as we saw in the relatively Lilliputian commodity markets last year. And really, how like is it that China embarks on policies that quickly halve the earnings of  the country’s exporters, as well as its 30 year hoard of accumulated savings? The demise of the dollar has been predicted more often than the ditching of Microsoft’s Windows as the global PC operating system, and is just as likely.  Hate the greenback as much as you like, but there just isn’t any other alternative. I have been hearing these arguments ever since the US went off the gold standard in 1973. First there was a perennial Arab threat to price crude in a basket of currencies. Gee, they never seem to complain when the buck is going up. Then there was the speculated emergence of the “Yen Block”, in the eighties, back when Japan was dominating international trade and the yen was bumping up against ¥80 to the dollar. Remember the book “Japan as Number One? Ha! Double Ha! Then we got all that European whining after the launch of the euro when the weak dollar was everyone’s one way trade. Let’s face it, Europeans hate using someone else’s currency as the primary reserve instrument. Before the dollar, sterling was in widespread use and was equally despised. So rather than waste time discussing this issue anymore, let’s talk about something more important, like which of those two flies over there will jump off the wall first.