Let's tune into a speech by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen in which she warned China about cooperating with Russia.

Those wishing to watch the Full Presentation can do so at the preceding link.

Video statements of note

  • She warned those countries that were still "sitting on the fence, perhaps seeing an opportunity to gain by preserving their relationship with Russia and backfilling the void left by others" that their motivations were short-sighted.

  • "The future of our international order, both for peaceful security and economic prosperity, is at stake," she said. "And let’s be clear, the unified coalition ... will not be indifferent to actions that undermine the sanctions we’ve put in place."

  • Washington and its allies have sought to pressure India, China and other "fence-sitters" to take a clear stance opposing Russia and what it has called a "special military operation."

  • In a question and answer session, Yellen said that the United States needed to work hard with China to avoid a bipolar global financial system that pits democracies against autocratic countries. China has benefited from the U.S.-led financial architecture but its reliance on state-owned enterprises and other economic practices puts U.S. national security interests at risk.

The above clips from Reuters. 

The comment on a bipolar global financial system kicked off a huge discussion on Twitter, most of it silly.

Even without playing the above videos, it was clear from the Tweet that Yellen was concerned over the failure of US sanctions to stop Russia, not the loss of US dollar reserve currency status, China backing the yuan with gold, hyperinflation concerns or any such nonsense. 

Why impossible?

Loren needs to give this more thought, not me. 

It's impossible because short of ending fractional reserve lending it's not possible to maintain convertibility of fiat currency to gold.

The system will always break down which is why Nixon ended dollar convertibility. 

There is no country willing to end fractional reserve lending. 

Energy as a currency is ridiculous for hopefully obvious reasons. And as I have stated many times China does not want to have reserve currency status nor does it want a strong yuan because neither is compatible with export mercantilism. 

Hyperinflation nonsense yet again

The discussion over reserve currencies led to another silly idea, hyperinflation. 

It's really quite amazing how misconceptions on the meaning of "bipolar global financial system" led to discussion not about sanctions but reserve currency status and hyperinflation. 

To me it was obvious what Yellen was concerned over but I sought out the videos to prove it.

What would it take for the yuan to dethrone the dollar?

  1. China would have to float the yuan.

  2. End capital controls.

  3. Respect property rights.

  4. Have a bond market big enough (China has virtually no gov't bond market).

  5. Inspire global trust.

  6. Be willing to have trade deficits.

  7. Stop export mercantilism.

  8. Have a currency market big enough.

Perhaps China meets condition 8. It flunks the first 7.

The Yuan will not replace the US Dollar, nor will it be backed by commodities

For discussion of why China will not back the yuan by commodities, please see The Yuan Will Not Replace the US Dollar, Nor Will It Be Backed by Commodities.

What does China do with a dollar that's no longer risk free? Buy gold?

To understand escaping the dollar in greater detail please see What Does China Do With a Dollar That's No Longer Risk Free? Buy Gold?

Ramifications of US actions

The main ramification of disastrous sanction policy started by Trump and escalated by Biden is that many countries including Russia, China, India, Iran, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia are all damn tired of it.

Janet Yellen is very concerned over China working with Russia to avoid US sanctions.

Numerous countries will establish ways of avoiding the US dictating sanction policy for the world.

That will not cause hyperinflation nor the US its loss of reserve currency status. The latter needs a suitable replacement and none is remotely on the horizon. 

Weaponizing the US Dollar

To tie all of this together, please see US Sanction Policy Forces Russia to Default. Let's Go Over the Ramifications

I view the ramifications as primarily a good thing. And although I would like to see a 100% gold-backed currency no country will accept the conditions, primarily fiscal and trade discipline, that commodity backing of currency requires.

Inflate at will remains the global mantra. Dollar hyperinflation is not possible in this setup.

This material is based upon information that Sitka Pacific Capital Management considers reliable and endeavors to keep current, Sitka Pacific Capital Management does not assure that this material is accurate, current or complete, and it should not be relied upon as such.

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