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February 1, 2015

U.S. Senate Finance Chairman Says Obama Administration Must Address Currency Manipulation

According to Reuters, in remarks last Friday at the American Enterprise Institute, U.S. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) urged the White House to “insist that U.S. trading partners pledge not to manipulate currencies when negotiating trade deals.” The chairman also said, “The administration must engage much more effectively with Congress on this issue if they want to receive strong support for TPA (trade promotion authority) and any subsequent trade agreements.” 

Finally, Sen. Hatch pledged the Senate version of Trade Promotion Authority, which the chamber is expected to debate in the next several weeks, will include “a new principal negotiating objective addressing currency manipulation.” To read Sen. Hatch’s full remarks, click here

MSCI will reserve judgment on the Senate TPA bill until it is released, but is encouraged Sen. Hatch is committed to addressing the currency issue as part of a broader debate on trade legislation. We encourage our members to call or email Sen. Hatch’s office to voice support for a currency provision in TPA. 

Meanwhile, according to The Wall Street Journal the Obama Administration “prefers to handle currency manipulation through the Treasury Department and via international forums including the International Monetary Fund and the Group of 20 biggest global economies.” As a reminder, the Obama administration has not addressed currency manipulation as part of its negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Several members of Congress, including many members of the president’s own party, have said they will not support TPP without efforts to address currency manipulation.