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The U.S. China Dispute over Renminbi: Who is Right?

March 29th, 2010 12 comments

Recently, a rising chorus can be heard in the U.S. accusing China of “manipulating” the value of the RMB. In a recent op-ed, Krugman characterized Chinese policy as an “anti-stimulus” to the rest of the world. In an editorial op-ed, the NY Times staff accused China of playing a “beggar-thy-neighbor competitive devaluation” that is “threatening economies around the world … fueling huge trade deficits in the United States and Europe … [and] crowding out exports from other developing countries, threatening their hopes of recovery.” 130 Congressman sent letter to the Obama administration urging Obama to take action against the yuan.

In response, China has denied that its policy has caused harm to the world. In contrast, China has argued that a stable Yuan is a major factor that has kept the world from economic free fall today. The trade imbalance between the U.S. and China is caused more by stringent U.S. export restrictions than the value of the yuan.

I am not going to go over every economic theory there is about international trade (there are so many), but will make a few observations. Read more…