It was my good fortune to receive an advance copy of Jim Rickards' new book, Currency Wars. It is a great book, and I highly recommend it.
The book is split into three parts, with the first part being almost surreal because it reads more like a novel than non-fiction. It details Rickards' participation in an exercise at the Warfare Analysis Laboratory near Washington D.C. This group is one of the Defense Department's leading venues for war games and strategic planning, but in a first-ever event, the game in which Rickards joined was not a war-fighting simulation. Rather, several dozen people from the military, academic and intelligence communities fought a global financial war using currencies and capital markets to support national interests. Rickards and two colleagues were invited to give the simulation some real-world, Wall Street expertise about markets, which they certainly did.
I guarantee that when you start reading this part, you won't put the book down until you learn the outcome of the war. It reads better than a suspense novel, even though the ending is somewhat anti-climactic and predictable. While I won't spoil it for you by divulging the ending, I will note that gold has a big role to play. In fact, gold reappears throughout the whole book.
In the second section, Rickards analyzes the first two currency wars (CWI and CWII). He provides an interesting historical account of the global monetary twists and turns, ups and downs that marked much of the twentieth century, with keen insight into the motivations why these currency wars were fought. CWI lasted from 1921 to 1936.Lire la suite ›
Currency Wars plonge le lecteur dans les arcanes des guerres de monnaies, non moins dévastatrices que les conflits armés. James Rickards nous plonge dès la première partie dans une atmosphère digne des romans de guerre froide, au cœur d'une simulation d'affrontements entre nations où les armes ne sont autres que les politiques monétaires et les munitions les devises. S'en suivent une analyse fouillée des précédents conflits monétaires afin d'en entrevoir les conséquences et une analyse non moins creusée des scénarios probables dans la nouvelle guerre qui se dessinent entre super puissances. Un livre aussi passionnant qu'inquiétant qui permet de mieux comprendre les liens monétaires qui lient les grandes puissances et la façon dont cela influe sur la stratégie des états.
i only can say one thing: this book must be read, it's an excellent one! it's rare reading something so accurate; of course the predictions are perhaps not the ones you wish, but it would be greater damage staying blind...so read it.
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The best thing since sliced bread?11 novembre 2011
- Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle
Jim Rickards, who is famous, among other things, for his ability to accurately predict the Fed's moves ahead of time. His most recent accurate call was the implementation of Operation Twist, i.e the selling of short-term government debt and the buying of long-term government debt in order to increase short-term interest rates and decrease long-term interest rates.
The main theme of the book is that the world is already heading toward a full-blown currency war which will bring even harsher economic turmoil to the world economy than the one we experienced in the last three years since the housing bubble burst in the U.S.
Rickards explores in depth, basing his arguments on past currency wars such as the one after WW1 between several European countries and the U.S., and why currency wars are a lose-lose situation. In short, Rickards's main argument is that countries around the world are devaluing their currencies in order to boost their exports (domestically produced goods and services will be cheaper for foreigners) thereby increasing their GDP. However, such actions will frequently be met by mutual currency devaluation by other countries or by some protectionist policy such as tariffs. Therefore, countries will gain a temporary advantage until other countries retaliate, the end result of which will be: inflation brought on from currency devaluation, protectionism and the halt of free trade, thus - wealth destruction. And in a worst case scenario, an outright military conflict.
As was mentioned above, I found Rickards's thesis to be well argued and backed with plenty of historical facts. To sum up, this book just has it all, great and engaging writing, fascinating economic history, and shrewd analysis of the current and coming global crisis.
188 internautes sur 198 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Currency Wars: The Making of the Next Global Crisis11 novembre 2011
- Publié sur Amazon.com
No one is safe from Rickards' insightful analysis in this original and fast-paced history of world economic and monetary policy and the currency wars that have led to destructive outcomes more than once in the last hundred years. Despite the fact that repeated manipulation of currency by various countries throughout recent history in an attempt to dominate trade and spur domestic economic growth has failed miserably, the U.S. now faces a new currency war that might be, as Rickards says, "the currency war to end all currency wars." His disdain for the use of Quantitative Easing and the creation of a new world central bank is palpable and the urgency with which he makes his argument is cogent and frankly, terrifying. Rickards tells a fascinating story, taking the reader from the use of gold as an international currency in the Sixth century BC up to the current day, seamlessly connecting historical events in a manner that will appeal to experts and novices alike. His reductionist descriptions and gallows humor spares no one, and his analogies are both informative and beautifully written. Currency Wars is a must read for everyone, from classically-trained economists to small-time investors. But beware: after you read this book, instead of stuffing your mattress with cash, you may be inclined to do so with gold bullion.
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Unlike 2008...this time we've been warned.10 novembre 2011
- Publié sur Amazon.com
If you have the stomach for doing a deep dive into the causes and cures of the worldwide financial morass we're in, here it is! "Currency Wars" takes you on a journey unlike any other. From a firsthand account of the wranglings at a mock "financial war game" in the bowels of the Pentagon, through a rich and literate history of previous currency wars with their devastating outcomes, Rickards is in full command of his topic. The author then brings us right up to present moment where he offers possible endgame scenarios to this latest currency war: paper, gold, or chaos! With outcome uncertain and stakes sky high, the tension is palpable! The final chapter is simply mind blowing! But that's not all. "Currency Wars" isn't simply an economics or history book. Rickards gives us a lot more. Chapter 9 is the most stinging indictment yet of the policy and intellectual failures of the Fed, Keynesianism and Monetarism. When you finish Chapter 9 your faith in economic conventional wisdom will be thoroughly shattered. The author also offers up some of the most original theory and analysis in economics since John Maynard Keynes himself in the 1920's. It's conceptually challenging but well worth the effort.
Unlike the financial meltdown of '08, this time you can say you've been warned. Extremely timely, and yet ahead of its time, "Currency Wars" is a revelation. The Media and politicians are so far behind the curve on this story that once they start giving it some weight it will already be too late to save yourself financially. You must read this book now!
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A MUST READ!11 novembre 2011
Elizabeth Van Ost
- Publié sur Amazon.com
A currency war is a desperate and dark road your government takes you down when they become incapable of spurring domestic growth by any other means. But "stealing" growth from other countries by printing tons of money and cheapening one's own currency comes with an enormous price tag. In the new and complex arena of "geo-politics meets financial warfare," James Rickards is an intellectual tour de force. "Currency Wars" takes us on a whirlwind global tour from Peking to Moscow to Dubai, where governments and even everyday citizens are already hedging themselves against a declining U.S. Dollar. Sadly, most Americans are completely unaware of the dangers surrounding them and are still just hoping for the best. "Currency Wars" gives us a full understanding of the forces and players involved in taking us into this financial firestorm that's about to flashover. Once armed with this book, everyday Americans will also have a fighting chance. Thank you James!
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A very different look at the world economy. Riveting.31 janvier 2012
John E. Pombrio
- Publié sur Amazon.com
Currency Wars was a complete revelation to me. The author goes into the past century of busts, booms, depressions, recessions, and inflation with a completely different approach than any other author that I have read (and I have read many!). Mr. Rickards writes about the changing nature of currencies (concentrating on the dollar), the gold standard, and how governments have been manipulating their currencies mostly to catastrophic results. I just have to recommend the book if nothing more than to have people exposed to a much different way of looking at how the world economy works and how it is constantly being fought over. It is novel and though provoking. It will leave you lying in bed muttering to yourself "What was that part about gold again?" or "Breakdown of complex systems? How does THAT explain the US economy?" It is a GREAT read, entertaining and filled with conspiracies that took my breath away and made me laugh out loud. Having the US dictating to the world by John Connally and Richard Nixon to bring about trade surpluses to the US only to have it backfire so badly is a hel'of'a story. How the Fed's Ben Bernanke is doing the same with QE and QE2 by causing inflation around the world and selling it by promoting low interest rates AND the specter of high inflation is mind boggling. It just sounds so right. The headiest part is how the author systematically shows how badly decisions have been made due to outdated, outmoded, or dismissed economic theories over the past 50 years. His own observations are backed up by well thought out reasons why things are now. He has a willingness to look at alternative economic theories that are completely new to me and that makes the world a much messier place than anyone dares to admit. Throwing complexity theory, fractals, and chaos into the world economies and you can get the completely unexpected results that we are seeing today that "normal" economic theories cannot explain at all. The author admits that this is on the edge of our knowledge but something new is needed as the "normal" economics that we are working with has failed us so miserably. I don't think I have read a more scathing review of the myriad failures that the US Fed have made from the day it was created. The Great Depression, the mighty inflationary spiral of of the 70's, the housing and stock bubbles, and the Great Panic of 2008 can be laid directly at their doorstep. It has failed in ALL of it mandates. It has failed to hold inflation in check. It has failed to keep unemployment low. It has failed to bail out banks that deserved to be bailed out. It has started currency wars with England, France, and now China. It has loaned huge amounts of money to banks that are not even part of their charter in Europe and Asia. It has made itself completely insolvent and is hiding it with the Treasury's help. The Fed is manipulating our expectations by waving their hands around in the magic trick of making us concentrate on low interest rates and expectations of high inflation to make us buy things to bail out the government. I will never trust the Fed again. The final chapter is a shocking look at the possibilities for a complete meltdown of the US currency that reads like a WSJ article in the near future. The most probable result is a general collapse of the currency, markets, and economies around the world within a matter of days. How will the US respond? Possibly going back to a more rational form of a gold standard seems to be the best answer the book comes up with, but there are other possibilities including an economic dark age descending upon us all. There are answers in the book on how to unravel the mess we are in (for instance break up the huge banks, outlaw derivatives, massively decrease the size of governments, and go back to some sort of gold standard) but don't expect anyone to believe them, especially those who are the ones receiving the tremendous benefits they get from an unbalanced economy. No easy answers, no comfort to be had here, only the realization that there is a lot more going on than I had ever imagined and no one is really in control.