This week, the Russian central bank announced a shock decision to hike up its key interest rate from 10.5% to 17%, effective immediately. Incredible.
On Monday alone the ruble declined more than 9% against the dollar, and almost 50% in 2014. It looks like a massacre.
If you listen to conventional financial news, they’ll all tell you that you’d have to be insane to own anything in Russia right now—stocks, bonds, currency, etc.
They’ll tell you that the ruble is in freefall, and that the dollar is the place to be.
However, unlike the Russian Central Bank, the Fed doesn’t own gold. It loudly proclaims this on its own website: “The Federal Reserve does not own gold.” It holds ‘certificates’ which are redeemable for US dollars. But there’s not a single ounce of gold backing the US dollar.
So… with no gold and pitifully razor thin solvency levels, it really wouldn’t take much of a shock to topple the dollar.
By comparison, the ruble is much better capitalized and actually has something backing it.
The bottom line, however, is—if you wouldn’t own the ruble, then what are you doing holding 100% of your assets in the dollar?