Dollar Weak? Not Against Yuan!

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture as part of the Making It In America project. I am a Fellow with CAF.
Conservatives are blasting President Obama, saying he is causing a “weak” dollar. The Drudge Report has a headline or a story pretty much every day blasting this message out. Republican e-mails warn that the dollar is “collapsing” under Obama. Blogs and talk show hosts declare that civilization will cease, urging listeners to buy as much gold as they can.
But conservatives should know that the dollar is steady where it counts – against the Chinese Yuan. Yesterday, October 20, the exchange rate was 6.82653. On May 6 it reached a low of 6.82157 and on June 17 a high of 6.83743.
Conservatives react intensely to words like “strong” and “weak” without understanding the meaning. Here is what it means: Things made in America cost less when the dollar is lower, or “weak.” A lower dollar creates an incentive for others to purchase things made in America, which means factories are busy, new factories can open, and jobs are created.
But while the dollar drops against every other currency the Chinese Yuan remains the same, and Chinese goods don’t get more expensive – at least here. So our factories are not busier, the import/export imbalance stays the same and American jobs are not created.
One might ask, “How is this possible in a free market?” Indeed.