Stories about dollar

The $$$ conundrum: Why are currencies around the world depreciating against the dollar?

For the past few weeks, there has been an ongoing verbal war between the American President Donald Trump and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan. The former has been pushing for the release of American Pastor Andrew Brunson from Turkish prisons. Brunson has been imprisoned in Turkey since 2016 on charges of aiding a Turkish coup against Erdogan, which was ultimately unsuccessful. Additionally, in his drive to make America great again, Trump has imposed sanctions and tariffs on Turkish imports. Consequently, there has been a drop in the value of the Turkish lira against the US dollar. President Erdogan has taken full advantage of the ...

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Will Russia survive under Vladimir Putin?

In an interview with the Russian and foreign media on January 19, 2014, Vladimir Putin remarked: “Sometimes it is necessary to be lonely in order to prove that you are right”. But has Putin’s self-righteousness actually been efficacious for Russia? The alteration of the foreign policy decision-making structure by Putin allowed him to emerge as the central decision-maker ever since he stepped into power. Policy matters were assigned to secondary actors composed of an informal circle of loyal associates to Putin. The inner circle of Putin loyalists are power hungry and in such a system, the effectiveness of policy is lost. Corruption is enhanced ...

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Pakistan needs a permanent source of dollar inflows

The state of affairs prevalent in Pakistan’s currency market can be considered analogous to that of a bathtub. Just turn the tap and water will start flowing into the tub. Assuming the plughole is properly covered, the tub would start accumulating water. However, if the plug is removed, all the water flowing in from the tap would immediately flow out of the tub. The equilibrium point would arrive when the water flowing in from the tap is sufficient enough to compensate for the water going down the drain. And Pakistan’s currency market is just not able to maintain this equilibrium. The Pakistan Muslim ...

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The rise of the rupee: A politically potent economical stupidity

Last week I received a call from a friend in Karachi. “What is going on with the dollar?! Should I buy dollars? Why is it falling like this?”  My answer was simple. “The dollar isn’t falling; it’s the rupee that is rising.” What’s the difference? Difference is its implication. Hailing from a regime that had made promises of ending load shedding within 90 days of coming to power, the fact that Finance Minister Ishaq Dar made good on his December 2013 promise to bring the dollar down to Rs98 deserves an applause. While those who consider the currency exchange rate as something of a competitive sport where appreciation ...

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Pak sarzameen shaadbaad

“Pak sarzameen shaadbaad” (Blessed be the sacred land) The old, rusty metal door made a creaking sound when the hunched attendant with crooked teeth and clubbed, callous fingers with dirty nails, opened it with a push of his shoulder. He took a drag from the cigarette hanging between his beetle nut stained lips and exhaled. The smoke made strange shapes before disappearing into the thick air. A lone, low wattage energy saver hung from the ceiling with a wire, the light it emitted made everything look ghastly. Not that there were many things worth seeing. The smell of tobacco got mixed with the strong ...

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The 19 billion dollar question: Can Facebook compete with Google?

On February 19, 2014 Facebook announced the acquisition of WhatsApp for a whooping sum of $19 billion and the internet went crazy. The internet had to be put on sedatives to calm it down. This post, however, is not about how to sedate the internet; it is about trying to figure out why Facebook spent more money than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of 82 countries to a buy an app that can be downloaded for free. Just in case you were on an exploration mission to outer-space and missed the details, have a look at this and maybe this brilliant commentary too. To answer the 19 billion ...

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Should we be concerned about the almighty dollar game?

As someone who works in the finance industry, I am frequently asked, at social events, about where I think the dollar is headed. Although I’m not sure if people are genuinely showing interest in our economy or just trying to count their dollars their loved ones sent them from abroad. Regardless of their reasons, I value their intrigue nonetheless. The greenback affects our lives whether we like it or not. Pakistan looks to the US for just about everything – aid, trade, political arm twisting, you name it. So it’s important to understand how our economy reacts to the dollar game. But whether ...

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Hafiz Saeed: The (10) million dollar man

Ten million dollars. Not one, not five, 10! This is it Pakistanis. If you don’t take this opportunity, you have no one else to blame but yourself for not winning this lottery. Easier than any question asked by Amitabh Bachchan on KBC, this is the fastest, surest way to the top guys. America has answered your prayers and you can get out of poverty – now! Even with the usual 10% ‘charges’, this would leave you with a cool $9 million. Move to Karachi, officially the world’s cheapest city, and live the rest of your life in a nice bungalow with ...

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Don’t vote (but don’t complain)

As a young Pakistani I often feel patriotism is a virtue deficient in the Pakistani youth. To us, the phrase, ‘the grass is always greener on the other side’ is a suitable misfortune. We dwell upon how to escape – to a different country, a country more ‘suitable’ for the development of our skills or a country swelling with appreciation for individuals from other nations; those individuals being us. We, who didn’t like the working of the corrupt government in our country and didn’t bother making it suitable. Us, who didn’t vote and chose the ‘corrupt’ government by default. ...

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Debt and taxes: PPP’s planned loss

Elections are around the corner and the political heat is building-up. Soon there will be rallies, corner meetings and slogan chanting. Despite issues of massive magnitude, PPP’s coalition government will, hopefully, complete its term. But they might not wish to win the next general elections. The case I am trying to make is based on economic realities. Let’s analyse why. In the past four years of government, Pakistan’s economy faced tough challenges; two floods, financial mismanagement and lack of governance in all aspects of government functions, pushing the country into a deep economic crisis. Pakistan’s total public debt, which was Rs.6 trillion ...

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