I was planning to write an article to explain why the HK protestors have a very long shot to “move” the HK dollars and the Linked Exchange Rate System by their teeny tiny deposits. But I found that Professor Lui has explained this issue very well.
Note! The HK Linked Exchange Rate System is a de facto monetary system but not a simple exchange-rater-fixing control. The M0 supply of HK dollars is fully promised by the total amount the US dollar reserves at the ratio of 1:7.8. The fluctuation of the market exchange rate will directly change the quantity of the M0, which means the HK money issuing banks have incentives to buy or sell the currencies and maintain the rate fluctuate in a very narrow range.
The demands for more US dollar will directly shrink the quantity of the HK dollar, and the rising short-term interest rate will accelerate the process. Both will raise the exchange rate of the HK dollar. If every US dollar is taken away, there will be no HK dollars in the market at all. Here comes the problem: what currency a citizen must use to pay her tickets, punishments, taxes, and rents? There are always demands for HK dollars and people who have all US dollars in hands will have to bear the risk of loss. People will be forced to crazily trace the small quantity of the HK dollars.
(Based on the M0 supply records, we can tell that the foreseeability of the supply of Renminbi (RMB) is higher than of the US dollar. The coinage of the US government was naughtier and more irresponsible, especially in 2008 and 2013. )
(Since July 21, 2005, the central bank of China has switched RMB from hooking solely onto the US dollar to a bucket of foreign currencies. The components have been confidential.)
(Nonetheless, we could guess that the weight of the US dollar of the bucket could be more than 90% in the beginning. With the decreasing of the US dollar weight of the bucket, the exchange of the RMB to the USD started to rise.)
(a. We can figure out that the strength of the RMB had been enhanced from the more and more noticeable growth of the foreign exchange reserves from 2002. Since the RMB has hooked onto the US dollar, as long as the exchange rate being unchanged, the growth of the foreign exchange reserves would massively climb due to the greater international aggregated demands for the Chinese products and services.)
(b. The exchange rate of the RMB to the US dollar started to climb after the hook being switched to a bucket of currencies. However, the growth of the foreign exchange reserves had astonishingly progressed, which showed that the RMB was the strongest currency against others during this period of time. We may assume that if the exchange rate of the RMB to the US dollar had had not raised, the growth of the reserves would have been reaching surprisingly higher.)
c. 中國外匯存底的高度成長也部分解釋了為何2008年之後美元大幅發行卻未在美國境內引發高度通貨膨脹 — 因為人民幣鉤著美元本身，保證了美元的強勢。此論點大大傷害假台獨覺青的玻璃心，但事實上恰恰是中國的經濟實力保障了美元的購買力。
(c. The remarkable growth of the foreign exchange reserves of China partly explains the reason why there has been no noticeable inflation occurred domestically in the US after its massively printing money since 2008. Because the RMB had been hooking onto the US dollar, which promised the buying power of the US dollar. This argument would hurt the fragile hearts of the so-called youths of awareness.)
(d. The damages caused by wrong economic policies, like the “changing-the-bird-in-the-cage” policy or the “new Labor Contract Law,” was getting more apparent. A lot of marginal firms were forced to close or being out of China, but we have seen not enough highly-profited companies to fulfill the absence. The decrease of the exchange rate of the RMB companying with the reduction of the foreign exchange reserves clearly reflects the possibility of the decline of the Chinese economy after 2015.)
(e. The weak RMB could also be partly due to the ratio of the US dollar in the bucket raising back to as high as nearly 100% again.)
(Here are my humble opinions:)
(A. From 2001 to 2019, the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of the Chinese M0 supply is around eight percent, and the CAGR of the foreign exchange reserves is about 17% of the same period. Say the reserves are also the currency issuance reserves of the Renminbi, there is no sign of oversupplying. This refutes what the common arguers, who believe “the coming collapse of China,” have claimed, “the RMB is worthless.”)
(B. President Trump and his administrations have claimed that the currency exchange manipulation by the Chinese government is obviously nonsense because the weakness after 2015 was mainly caused by the declined progress of the Chinese economy and possible adjustments of the components of the currency bucket. The IMF officially disagrees with the “China-manipulating-exchange-rate” argument, either.
(C. A lot of conventional financial or economic experts who think the main reason for the declined exchange rate of the RMB is because of the trade wars between the US and China. They just cannot see the wood for the trees. The long term trend of the exchange rate of one nation’s currency always reflects the strength of the nation’s economy, which is de facto foreign aggregated demands for the very nation’s goods and services. )
(D. I think the RMB should have had changed its hook from on a bucket of currencies to other targets while the RMB was vigorous during 2008~2012. Today’s timing is not as good as before. However, it is still worth a shot. According to the policy of “streamlining government functions and administration and delegating powers while improving regulation” pursued by the General Office of the State Council and more disclosed informations of the national digital currency developed by the People’s Bank of China, I guess the Chinese government may have plans to change the hook of the RMB and to internationalize its currency. Once the Chinese government successfully get this job done, the strong US dollar will be no longer exist. The RMB will have its first step on the journey of internationalization. Although Mr. Trump was wrong on blaming China for everything, however, the Chinese government is true the key to the weak-dollar policy, which has been pursued by Mr. Trump.)
( How and in what degree the Chinese government would lift its foreign exchange controls shall be under observation. It is unavoidable to hook a good target for keeping the value of the RMB steady while the foreigners can freely purchase and sell the RMB. Furthermore, if the Chinese government can victoriously complete this mission, other developing countries and European countries will partly change the hooks of their currencies onto the RMB. There will be a trend.)
二、諾貝爾經濟學獎得主Milton Friedman曾於「Power of the Market」影片中以一支鉛筆為例，這支鉛筆很可能集結成千上萬的人力分工合作才能製作出來 — 筆身的木頭是從森林砍伐運出來，砍樹需要的斧頭或鏈鋸機械需要用鋼製作，鋼才由鐵礦採出，由大煉鋼高爐提煉，使用的煤礦與各種化學添加劑又分別從不同礦源、不同設備採出提煉。鉛筆的石墨筆心、橡皮擦、包覆橡皮擦的鋁片、膠水…等等，每一個環節均是大量彼此完全不認識的人力，透過市場交易達成分工合作。
“In a free market economy, the firm is constantly influenced by the wider market in which it operates. The product market reveals information critical to a firm’s survival, such as what not to produce — when the sale price for a product will not cover the cost of its production; the factor market informs the cost of substitution between factors of production. While there is some room for price-seeking, firms cannot greatly alter the market price for their inputs. To increase its chance of survival, a firm can innovate and supply new and better products to consumers, or it can improve efficiency and produce the same goods at a lower cost than its competitors. Thus, the market competition allows profitable firms to grow and causes unprofitable ones to wither, forcing them to produce something different. At the same time, firms in a market economy adjust the wages paid to their employees in accord with their productivity; employees will lose their jobs if performance is unsatisfactory. This gives firms a powerful incentive with which to motivate their employees, whose productivity, unlike that of other factors of production, is open to the influence of the rate of compensation. This internal pressure encourages workers to make their best efforts, and whether those are good enough is judge only by consumers. The performance of the firm is decided by the ultimate test of market survival. ~from “How China Became Capitalist” by R. Coase”
大師手筆，短短幾句話就說明市場機制運作，也暗暗點出競爭之下為何企業可以累積財富。 同時，也指出「工資」的市場機制，打臉一堆蠢到以為工運、工會可以保障勞工權益的覺青。尤其「the ultimate test of market survival」一詞，是價格理論的精髓。