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Reasons for Hryvnia’s Collapse

By the end of «black Wednesday», Feb. 25, the Ukrainian currency exchange rate went down to 33 hryvnias to the dollar and never bounced back. It also plummeted as low as 50-60 hryvnias at the black market to stay there. The official rate was around 15 hryvnias to the dollar in mid-February... In general, the reason for the currency collapse is the economic crisis transforming into a national disaster. Ukrainian Prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has acknowledged recently that the economy dropped 20 % in 2014... According to the recently published forecasts, the GDP is to fall by 5, 5 % in 2015. The yearly inflation is estimated to be 25-26%. The crisis has also spread to banks...

Valentin KATASONOV | 02.03.2015


 

Ukraine Denouement

The fate of Ukraine is now shifting from the military battlefield back to the arena that counts most: that of international finance. Kiev is broke, having depleted its foreign reserves on waging war that has destroyed its industrial export and coal mining capacity in the Donbass (especially vis-à-vis Russia, which normally has bought 38 percent of Ukraine’s exports). Deeply in debt (with €3 billion falling due on December 20 to Russia), Ukraine faces insolvency if the IMF and Europe do not release new loans next month to pay for new imports as well as Russian and foreign bondholders.

EDITOR'S CHOICE | 17.02.2015


 

IMF Loans to Ukraine: Aimed at Total Destabilization

On February 12, Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, announced that the IMF had reached an agreement with the Ukrainian government on a new economic reform program. Ms Lagarde’s statement, made in Brussels, came only minutes after peace negotiations between the heads of the German, French, Russian und Ukrainian governments in Minsk, Belarus, had ended.

EDITOR'S CHOICE | 17.02.2015


 

Greece Eurozone Exit Is In The Wind. Is it A Harbinger of EU Disintegration Process?

One of the issues to hit the news in early 2015 is the possibility of Greece leaving the eurozone, or, even, the European Union. German weekly Spiegel reported that Chancellor Angela Merkel now believed that the eurozone could cope with Athens leaving the common currency in case the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) wins the January 25 parliamentary election. Rejections followed (allegedly Chancellor Merkel said something else) but there is no smoke without fire. The Greece eurozone exit has been in the wind since a long time. On the one hand, it can remedy the eurozone economic situation. On the other hand, the very fact of such a possibility being discussed could be perceived as a harbinger of EU disintegration process about to kick off... 

Valentin KATASONOV | 13.01.2015


 

Capital Controls: Global Experience

...In the 1997-1998 the countries of South East Asia had to counter the activities of financial speculators acting in accordance with the prescriptions of the International Monetary Fund. They resorted to currency interventions spending the money taken from currency reserves. With the reserves depleted they turned to world lenders. There they had the International Monetary Fund with its sickly and threadbare Washington consensus dragging them into a vicious circle. All of a sudden one country got out of it. Malaysia led by Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad’ introduced capital controls. It banned currency operations related to cross border capital flows. The measure was a direct challenge to the International Monetary Fund and its backroom owners...

Valentin KATASONOV | 22.12.2014


 

Ukraine Dips Into Dwindling Reserves To Pay Gazprom

The money has to come from somewhere. Ukraine will pay Russian natural gas company Gazprom the roughly $4.5 billion it owes in late payments from cash it has piling up in an already dwindling foreign reserve account, the National Bank of Ukraine said on Monday. Ukraine’s economy is once again on crisis footing. Earlier this year, it reached a deal for a $17.01 billion bailout package with the International Monetary Fund. That’s more than the country has in foreign reserves, which stood at just $16.3 billion in September, according to the IMF.

EDITOR'S CHOICE | 04.11.2014


 

The Internationalisation of the Yuan (II)

...The reserve currency issuing countries have balance of payments deficits. It means that a reserve currency is a trap. Back in the early 1960s Belgian-American economist Robert Triffin said there is a fundamental incompatibility between the attainment of US global economic stability and having a single national currency perform the role of the world’s reserve currency... The dollar started to function as a real reserve currency only when the United States foreign trade deficit became stable...

Valentin KATASONOV | 04.11.2014


 

Western Sponsors Liable for Kiev Basket Case

Since Washington and Brussels shunted the geopolitical tracks in the first place to create the financial train wreck that is now manifestly the Ukraine, you would think that there might be a sense of obligation on Western governments to salvage the mess. Not a bit of it, it seems. Furthermore, the train wreck is careening dangerously into the Russian economy. But still, the Western governments adopt an attitude that Moscow must pay for the damages... If Ukraine comes off the rails with an energy crisis this winter, the responsibility lies with the reckless regime-hijackers in Washington and Brussels...

Finian CUNNINGHAM | 23.10.2014


 

US Economy Safety Margin Tested as Oil Prices Go Down

...Speaking at the ASEM forum in Milan, Russian President Vladimir Putin noted that the world economy will not sustain oil prices at around 80 dollars per barrel... US shale oil producers will suffer most. According to experts’ estimates, the cost of production is around 80-90 dollars a barrel, 4-5 times more than the traditional oil. It means that the current price – 85 dollars a barrel as of October 17 – makes the companies operate in the red. Some producers will have to suspend operations facing mass bankruptcy in case the oil price falls lower than 80 dollars as shareholders start getting rid of zero profit bonds. The shale oil «soap bubble» will blow like the housing construction industry «bubble» blew in 2008. Of course, as time goes by oil prices will go up but it’ll be a different world with some US oil producers non-existent anymore...

Alexander DONETSKY | 20.10.2014


 

The Internationalisation of the Yuan (I)

The issue of turning the yuan into an international currency is the subject of much controversy. Some believe that Beijing should opt for full convertibility of the yuan, turning it into a fully-fledged international currency. Others believe that the yuan is already an international currency, citing impressive figures that reflect the growing use of the Chinese currency in international trade. Still others hold the view that turning the yuan into an international currency would be of no benefit to Beijing, and the Chinese authorities are even intentionally preventing it. The complexity of the problem lies in the fact that moving the yuan towards internationalisation involves three distinct phases: turning the Chinese currency into a) a trading currency, b) an investment currency, and c) a reserve currency...

Valentin KATASONOV | 19.10.2014




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OUR COLUMNIST
    Valentin KATASONOV

Reasons for Hryvnia’s Collapse

By the end of «black Wednesday», Feb. 25, the Ukrainian currency exchange rate went down to 33 hryvnias to the dollar and never bounced back. It also plummeted as low as 50-60 hryvnias at the black market to stay there. The official rate was around 15 hryvnias to the dollar in mid-February... In general, the reason for the currency collapse is the economic crisis transforming into a national disaster. Ukrainian Prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has acknowledged recently that the economy dropped 20 % in 2014... According to the recently published forecasts, the GDP is to fall by 5, 5 % in 2015. The yearly inflation is estimated to be 25-26%. The crisis has also spread to banks...

02.03.2015
 
 
 
 
 
 
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