Just eight months ago, Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega declared a “truce” in competitive currency devaluations. Now, Japanese and Swiss moves to weaken the yen and the franc show reviving tension in foreign-exchange markets as the deteriorating U.S. economy weighs on the dollar.
“We seem to be entering a new stage of the currency wars where it’s not just the emerging markets that are responding to broad dollar weakness,” said Callum Henderson, global head of currency research at Standard Chartered Plc in Singapore, who has written books on currency markets. “Expect much more intervention in the future and further acrimony in terms of how the U.S. dollar is doing.”
Impact on Rates
“It manifests itself by more pushing back or delaying of any planned rate hikes as opposed to outright intervention to weaken their respective currencies,” Trinh said. “You’re seeing that already. The Bank of Canada has been pushing out its tightening campaign, the Reserve Bank of Australia is taking on a protracted pause in its tightening cycle and there are question marks on how aggressively the Reserve Bank of New Zealand is able to hike as well.”