John Magnus, Timothy Brightbill, 16 April 2010

Does the US have a legal case for action against China’s exchange-rate policy? This column argues China’s currency regime qualifies as a subsidy in the legal sense and that the US has a legitimate case to respond within both the US and WTO legal frameworks. The high-profile difficulties are no reason to shy away from taking legal action.

Philip Levy, 16 April 2010

Many US analysts argue that China’s currency is undervalued and that its policy significantly impedes global macroeconomic rebalancing. This column outlines the possible policy responses available to the US. While multilateral policies are slower, they are less likely than unilateral policies to trigger a negative political response. But first the US needs to establish a principled basis for action.

Arvind Subramanian, 24 April 2010

Global imbalances have been central to the recent debate of China’s exchange-rate policy and its effect on US jobs. This column argues that global imbalances are not going away. The policy solution is clear. Coordination is needed among emerging economies on managing capital flows and exchange rates. Swift and substantially policy from China can help bring this about.

Daniel Leigh, Marco Terrones, Abdul Abiad, 17 April 2010

As the debate over whether China should reduce its current-account surplus continues, this column examines 28 such surplus reversals in advanced and emerging market economies over the past 50 years. Surplus reversals were not associated with lower growth in output or employment. Moreover, there are better balances between external and domestic demand and between growth in the tradables and non-tradables sectors.

Simon Evenett, 16 April 2010

Today Vox posts a new eBook “The US-Sino currency dispute: New insights from economics, politics, and law” that gathers 28 short essays written by 33 authors from around the world. The eBook provides the best available economic, legal, political, and geopolitical thinking on the confrontation, as well as on the causes and likely consequences of the dispute.

Takatoshi Ito, 15 April 2010

One objection to the calls for China to let its currency appreciate argues that the yen's appreciation during the 1980s was a cause of Japan’s “lost decade”. This column instead blames policymakers for not dealing with Japan’s property bubble early enough. China should learn from these mistakes with its own property bubble and let the renminbi appreciate.

Michael Waibel, 16 April 2010

What legal basis is there for retaliating against China’s exchange-rate policy? This column says that IMF rules are likely inadequate to rule against China, while its policy does not constitute a WTO-punishable export subsidy. It argues that exchange-rate conflicts should be handled by a proposed IMF dispute settlement mechanism, not the WTO.

Joel Trachtman, 30 April 2010

Does the US have a legal case against China’s exchange-rate regime? This column, which first appeared in Vox's latest eBook, argues that any claim against China at the WTO would face substantial hurdles, and would be unlikely to add pressure on China any time soon. If a claim does go ahead, it is more likely than not to fail.

Jeffrey Frankel, 16 April 2010

Much of the debate over China’s exchange-rate policy has focused on the effect on the US and other western economies. This column provides a comprehensive summary of China’s exchange-rate policy over the last five years and argues that it would also be in China’s interest to let its currency appreciate – and now is as good a time as any.

Claude Barfield, 16 April 2010

As the speculation over US action on China’s alleged currency manipulation intensifies, this column outlines the bills, proposals and comments that make up the political background to this debate.

Yiping Huang, 16 April 2010

The debate over the cause of China’s current-account surplus continues to develop. This column suggests a number of factors are probably to blame and one less-considered cause is input-cost distortion caused by China’s asymmetric economic liberalisation. Any debate on policy response must therefore move beyond simply discussing currency appreciation.

Fred Bergsten, 16 April 2010

C Fred Bergsten is one of several commentators calling for action against China’s exchange-rate policy. In this column, he outlines a three-part multilateral action plan to force China to allow the renminbi to appreciate: label China a “currency manipulator”, seek a special IMF consultation, and request a WTO dispute settlement panel.

Dukgeun Ahn, 16 April 2010

How might the US take action through the WTO over China’s alleged currency manipulation? This column analyses three potential legal issues: legality of exchange-rate policy under the GATT rules, legality under the subsidy rules, and the feasibility of non-violation complaints. It concludes that any WTO resolution will be difficult to achieve because the organisation is not designed to deal with alleged exchange-rate manipulation.

Charles Wyplosz, 30 April 2010

The current debate in the US over Chinese exchange-rate policy can be viewed as a rerun of the 1970s and ‘80s, with China taking Japan’s role. This column, which first appeared in the Vox's latest eBook, argues that while there is a relationship between current-account deficits and surpluses, causality is difficult to establish. Politics aside, even if China does not choose to appreciate its currency, inflation will eventually finish the job.

Jenny Corbett, Takatoshi Ito, 30 April 2010

Amongst other reasons, Chinese authorities hesitate to let the renminbi appreciate because they believe that a prime cause of Japan’s 20-year stagnation was its caving in to US demand for an appreciation of the yen. This column, which first appeared in Vox's latest eBook, argues that it was not caving to US pressure but resisting it that made Japanese monetary policy too lax and contributed to its asset bubble.

Patrick Messerlin, 16 April 2010

If the US government does brand China as a “currency manipulator”, should the EU follow suit? This column argues that EU officials are likely to be low key on the issue. There are far too many imbalances within the EU, notably Germany’s trade deficit, so that any complaints about China are doomed to degenerate into intra-EU discord.

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