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U.S. Dollar Entering Free Fall Crash Territory

Currencies / US Dollar Sep 14, 2009 - 09:58 AM GMT

By: Larry_Edelson

Currencies

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleMartin’s off this week. So I’m writing you today from Asia with a passionate plea to our country — to its citizens and especially to our leaders in Washington.

We are now the laughing stock of Asia. Our dollars are no longer respected; our ambitions, no longer mimicked.


Our way of life, often based on consuming far beyond our means, is being flat-out rejected.

I can’t even exchange a $100 bill on the street here anymore: Most of the street money changers will take euros, Singapore dollars, even Chinese yuan. But fearful of losing their shirt with sinking exchange rates, they don’t want U.S. dollars.

Not long ago, I never traveled without my American Express card. Now, it sits in my office safe. Many in Asia no longer accept the card anymore. MasterCard and Visa are still OK, but they’re also losing market share to locally grown cards like Aeon.

The running joke in Singapore, Hong Kong, Bangkok, and Kuala Lumpur is that the U.S. is the place where even your pet could get a credit card or a home mortgage.

So to Asians, the crisis we’re going through is our own fault. And although it was also caused by blunders in Western Europe and other regions, truth be told, they are mostly right.

The message is clear: We need to immediately stop living beyond our means. But can we?

Consider the facts:

  • Through August, the federal deficit has already hit $1.38 trillion, or TRIPLE last year’s all-time record deficit of $454.8 billion. And in September alone, the administration expects another $200 billion in red ink, bringing the total for the year to $1.58 trillion.
  • The U.S. government’s official debt is now at an all-time high of $11.8 trillion. That’s over $100,000 for each and every household in America.
  • Both the administration and its opponents agree that, over the next 10 years, the cumulative federal deficit will be another $9 trillion, bringing the burden per household up to $177,000.
  • The Federal Reserve is also in hock up to its eyeballs, with more than $2 trillion in liabilities on its balance sheet. That brings the total burden up to $194,000 per household.
  • Perhaps worst of all, the unfunded government IOUs that are now starting to come due on Social Security, Medicare, and Federal pension payments are also ballooning higher and now stand at an estimated $104 trillion, or $886,000 per household.

Grand total: Each and every household in America is indirectly responsible for a debt burden of over 1 MILLION DOLLARS!

Bottom line:

Even assuming they can save 5 percent of their income year after year … and even assuming every single penny of their savings is thrown into the pot … in order to pay off the U.S. government’s debts and obligations, each American family — and descendents — would have to toil for the next 429 years.

Problem is, we haven’t borrowed all that money from ourselves. We’ve borrowed more than half of the outstanding national debt from overseas investors, who now fund fully 50 percent of our debt addiction.

But now …

America’s foreign creditors are haunted by the spectacle of Washington’s spending binge and are starting to recoil in horror.

That’s why in April, U.S. bond purchases by foreign central banks plunged 41 percent from the month before, while purchases by foreign private investors dropped 7 percent. All in a single month!

Yet even as investors flee in increasing numbers, our government continues to ramp up spending — trying to hawk even more U.S. debt to foreign lenders.

The Obama administration largely ignores the fact that overseas investors are getting tired of footing the bill for our borrow-and-spend addiction … and are also becoming increasingly skeptical of our ability to pay our debts.

The result: More foreign central banks, overseas fund managers, and investors flee, leaving the U.S. government with no choice but to pump out more and more unbacked paper dollars and dump them into the economy — further eroding their value.

Dollar falls 15.1% in just 6 months!

Central banks over the last year have been actively replacing portions of their dollar reserves with the euro, the Canadian and Australian dollars … and gold. China alone recently announced it has quietly increased its gold reserves by more than 75 percent over the last seven years.

So it should come as no surprise that the widely watched U.S. Dollar Index, a measure of the dollar’s performance against a basket of six of the world’s major currencies, has plunged 15.1 percent since its high of March 4.

As you can see from the accompanying chart, that now puts the greenback in free-fall territory.

It’s plunging against the euro, the Japanese yen, the British pound, the Swiss franc, the Canadian dollar.

It’s even sliding against the currencies of lesser-developed economies like the Thai baht, the Philippine peso, the Indian rupee, the Malaysian ringgit, the Indonesian rupiah, and the Vietnamese dong.

And it leaves …

The U.S. and All Americans Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Either …

  • U.S. consumers and the U.S. government must slash spending drastically, accepting a deeper economic decline or …
  • They will perpetuate the borrow-and-spend cycle, destroying the U.S. dollar and, ultimately, our standard of living.

I’d like to hear your thoughts on how we might get out from under this mess we find ourselves in — and, more importantly, what YOU are doing to protect yourself, your family, and your retirement from the dollar’s demise.

Just jump over to my personal blog to weigh in on this issue by clicking here.

Best wishes,

Larry

This investment news is brought to you by Money and Markets . Money and Markets is a free daily investment newsletter from Martin D. Weiss and Weiss Research analysts offering the latest investing news and financial insights for the stock market, including tips and advice on investing in gold, energy and oil. Dr. Weiss is a leader in the fields of investing, interest rates, financial safety and economic forecasting. To view archives or subscribe, visit http://www.moneyandmarkets.com .

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