DOLLAR WOES The pressure on the U.S. dollar continues unabated. In Tokyo this morning, the yen slipped to another record low, just barely above 225 yen to the dollar. When I was in Tokyo last July the rate was 270:
Stories out of the oil producing nations are hinting more and more that some OPEC powers, so alarmed over the decline of the dollar, are pushing for a cut in the link between oil price and the dollar; that is, no longer to price it in American currency but in another, or perhaps a new rate reflecting several strong currencies, such as the D-mark, Swiss franc and the yen.
If such a move occurred — and there are some doubts it can be effected now, since the dollar is the world's only major reserve currency — there could be a massive dumping of the dollar around the world collapsing its value even more. If OPEC does not adopt such a move at this date, it is certainly a possibility later on. They may just settle for a hike in price of oil for now.
Meanwhile, President Carter enbarks on a weeklong foreign trip, leaving behind urgent memos from top officials to exercise his presidential power and impose a stiff tax on imported oil. He is not likely to do so unless the OPEC mini-summit on April. 3 forces his hand.