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2007 Recap

Forex market will start again tommorow. Lets do a summarized recap of 2007 before we move on to 2008.

During the early part of 2007, evidence mounted that the current US economic cycle had peaked, and analysts began to speculate that the US Federal Reserve Bank would cut interest rates. Nonetheless, the Dollar traded sideways for months until the housing bubble burst and the ensuing credit crisis quickly metastasized to the rest of the economy. The Fed responded by cutting interest rates by 50 basis points, and the Dollar began to unravel, losing 10% of its value in a matter of weeks. After that point, the bad news began to pour in.

The oil-exporting countries delivered a one-two punch to the Dollar, first by announcing that the possibility of accepting payment for oil in other currencies, than hinting towards a collective dissolution of their respective Dollar pegs. The Canadian Dollar reached parity with its counterpart to the south shortly thereafter. Countries in the developing world, including Brazil, Russia, and India, also witnessed surges in their respective currencies. The Chinese Yuan continued its slow climb, rising over 6% for the year, though this figure is probably closer to 2-3% in real terms. Even the Japanese Yen, previously held in place by the carry trade, notched an impressive performance as the credit crunch touched off a cascade of risk aversion. Then, of course, there was the interest rate story: by the end of the year, US interest rates were only 25 basis points above EU rates, and Dollar bears were licking their lips.

The news was not all bad, however. Foreign investors proved that they were willing to continue to finance the US twin deficits, though perhaps to a lesser extent than before. There were even several high-profile investments in US financial institutions, led by Sovereign Investment Funds, which collectively claim hundreds of billions of dollars at their disposal. In addition, the world's Central Banks announced plans to pump over $500 Billion into global capital markets, which should especially benefit the Dollar since the US bore the brunt of the credit crunch. Finally, economic data now indicate that US exports have been helped by the declining dollar.

All things considered, it could have been worse.

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