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Trump administration says no U.S. trading partners manipulate currency

Trump administration says no U.S. trading partners manipulate currency

No major trading partner of the U.S. was named a currency manipulator in a latest Treasury report on the foreign exchange policies of these countries, though a list including six countries whose polices were deemed to require close monitoring was left unchanged.

The United States designed none of its major trading partners as a currency manipulator Friday, but put six countries, including China, Japan and South Korea, on its "monitoring list" for closer watch on their currency practices.

Five other trading partners who were on last October's monitoring list - Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Germany and Switzerland - also remain on the list, ensuring that the Treasury would apply extra scrutiny to their foreign exchange and economic policies. In fact, there is evidence to suggest China may be trying to prop up the Chinese currency to prevent capital outflows detrimental to the slowing Chinese economy.

Trump on Wednesday said his administration would not label China a currency manipulator.

Economists have argued that China now does not merit the label of currency manipulator, and the Chinese currency, RMB, has been at equilibrium level in recent years.

He had repeatedly railed against the trade imbalance between the United States and China during his election campaign. It said it will scrutinise China's trade and currency practices very closely, especially in light of the extremely sizable bilateral trade surplus that China has with the US.

It shows his tough talk on China was only campaign rhetoric, said Wei Benhua, a senior researcher at Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University.

The comment was Trump's first in response to a failed missile test by North Korea overnight.

A day earlier, Trump had said that the U.S. -Russia relationship are at a low point.

The South Korean and USA military said the latest launch - conducted as tensions rose over the North's nuclear ambitions - was a failure.

Although Beijing has allowed the yuan to slowly appreciate in recent years and actively fought depreciation recently, .

Trump has said some U.S. trading partners, particularly China, manipulated their currency, but has since backed off that claim and acknowledged that China had not weakened the yuan to make its exports cheaper.

China has been accused of suppressing the Yuan to make its exports more competitive with United States goods.

In its review of the practices of the other nations, Treasury said Germany, the largest single economy in Europe, should act to encourage stronger domestic demand as a way to reduce its large trade surplus. The dollar's strength in the past two years has been a drag on US exports.

Taiwan's Central Bank said Saturday that the results have been anticipated by the bank so the latest USA currency report is unlikely to impose any material adverse impact on the local foreign exchange market.


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