October 23, 2013

Would US Treasuries been safer, had there been no debt-roof discussions, just business as usual?

Sir, John Plender holds that as a consequence of the “debt-ceiling imbroglio”, and the recent partial closure of US government, “that anyone who can diversify out of US Treasuries will now feel impelled do so as far as possible.” “Treasuries have turned anything but risk-free”, October 23.

If Plender implies that had only the US just gone on lifting the debt-roof of which it has to jump off, sooner or later, and kept on spending as usual, while there is no tapering of the QE, and all without even a discussion, that then the US treasuries would be safer, I do not agree. That is not what “a responsible custodian for more than 60 per cent of the world’s official reserves” should do.

But that there are reasons to diversify, on that there is little doubt. The doubts are with respect to, diversify into what? Though Plender mentions China’s rising to challenge US hegemony, I do not think he is seriously thinking about putting his savings in Chinese banks. Could Plender have gold in mind?