Trump says Russia, China playing ‘currency devaluation game’

US President Donald Trump accused Russia and China of devaluing their currencies while the United States raises interest rates. (AFP)
Updated 16 April 2018
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Trump says Russia, China playing ‘currency devaluation game’

  • Trump accuses Russia and China of devaluing their currencies on Twitter
  • Trump’s tweet referred to what he sees as unfair trading advantages

Washington: US President Donald Trump accused Russia and China on Monday of devaluing their currencies while the United States raises interest rates.
“Russia and China are playing the Currency Devaluation game as the US keeps raising interest rates. Not acceptable!” Trump said in a Twitter post.
Trump’s tweet referred to what he sees as unfair trading advantages: if a country’s currency is artificially low, its exports are more competitive. Higher US interest rates would generally increase the value of the dollar, making US exports more expensive.
Since Trump took office in January 2017, the dollar has weakened substantially against most currencies, including the Chinese yuan and, until the US imposed sanctions on Russia in the last few weeks, the ruble.
Against the yuan, the dollar has fallen by 8.6 percent since Jan. 20, 2017, while it has appreciated 4.5 percent against the ruble. Until the US announced sanctions on Russian oligarchs earlier this month, however, the dollar had weakened by nearly 4 percent against the Russian currency. That gain was entirely erased by a two-day drop of 8.4 percent in the ruble on April 9 and 10.
More widely, the US dollar index, which measures the greenback’s value against a basket of major trading partner currencies, has declined by 11.2 percent since Trump became president.
The US Treasury, in a semi-annual report on Friday, again refrained from naming any major trading partners as currency manipulators. The report came as the Trump administration pursues potential tariffs, negotiations and other restrictions to try to cut a massive trade deficit with China.
The report did not mention Trump’s recent threats to impose billions of dollars worth of tariffs on Chinese goods over Beijing’s intellectual property practices, or pending Treasury restrictions on Chinese investment in the United States.


Potential SABIC deal would affect Saudi Aramco IPO time frame, says CEO Nasser

Updated 20 July 2018
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Potential SABIC deal would affect Saudi Aramco IPO time frame, says CEO Nasser

JEDDAH: A potential deal to buy a stake in petrochemical maker SABIC would affect the time frame of Saudi Aramco's initial public offering (IPO), the oil firm's president and CEO Amin H. Nasser said Friday. 

The IPO of around 5 percent of Aramco, which was initially to take place this year but is now more likely to happen later, would be the world's biggest listing, raising up to $100 billion.

Nasser said that buying a stake in a chemical company like SABIC would positively affect Aramco's revenue, Al Arabiya reported.

“We are still in the very early stages of the discussion to buy a stake in SABIC,” the Aramco CEO said.

“Aramco is ready for the initial offer and the timing remains subject to the state's decision.”

Saudi Aramco said on Thursday it is looking at the possibility of buying a stake in SABIC, a move that could boost the state oil giant’s market valuation ahead of the planned IPO.
Aramco said in a statement that it was in “very early-stage discussions” with the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) to acquire the stake in SABIC via a private transaction. It has no plans to acquire any publicly held shares, it said.
In a separate statement, PIF also said talks about a sale were in early stages. “There is a possibility that no agreement will be reached in relation to this potential transaction,” it said.