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September 16, 2004

United States
U.S. dependence on Asian central banks

One country’s external debt is another country’s asset. The U.S. capital account data leaves little doubt that foreign central banks have been a huge source of financing for the U.S. current account…

September 23, 2004

United States
The currency strategist at Morgan Stanley might want to talk to the chief economist at Morgan Stanley

Steve Johnson’s market insight column in Thursday’s Financial Times keys off Morgan Stanley’s currency strategist Stephen Jen’s argument that "As long as Asia insists on staying inside this dollar ar…

October 19, 2004

United States
The FT has a good article on how the US is funding its trade deficit

The Treasury provides monthly data on foreign purchases of US long-term securities. It is not a complete look at how the US is funding its trade and current account deficit, but it is the best snap …

October 20, 2004

Capital Flows
The IMF staff report on Iraq is a goldmine

I don’t expect many journalists will delve into it, but the IMF staff report on Iraq is a fountain of information. My favorite number: in 2004, the amount Iraq will spend importing (yes, importing) …

November 6, 2004

Will Japan be able to stay on the sidelines for long?

Some facts: 1) In 2003, Japan increased its reserves by $200 billion, emerging Asia by $245 billion. The world as whole increased its reserves by $500 billion, so Asia accounted for most of the worl…

November 7, 2004

United States
Updated paper on the sustainablility of US trade and current account deficits

Nouriel and I have just posted our updated analysis of US external sustainability, i.e. the United States capacity to continue to run large trade and current account deficits.The paper is certainly l…

November 10, 2004

United States
September trade: dueling headlines

Monthly exports set a record sounds better than third highest monthly trade deficit ever, or second highest monthly imports ever. All accurately describe this month’s trade release.The fact that exp…

November 13, 2004

Budget, Debt, and Deficits
Will partial privatization of social security pass the global test?

This post is primarily about the implications of partial privatization of social security on the budget, not about its overall merits. For what it is worth, I personally think good old pay-as-you-go …

November 15, 2004

Where are George Soros and the other macro hedge funds?

With apologies to Philip Coggan, I plagarized his FT headline from a few days ago -- he asked the same question as Brad DeLong, namely, why aren’t big bets from big macro hedge funds driving the doll…

November 18, 2004

Taking away the punch bowl when the party is really getting going?

That is the classic view of the role of the central bank. It extends beyond using monetary policy to prevent "overheating" and price inflation. Most central bank regulate the banking system, and si…