Updates market data throughout.
The strengthening U.S. currency is depressing prices for commodities, in particular oil (which is priced in dollars) and gold.
Global stocks took a dive this morning, following declining oil prices. U.S. stocks are now joining the slump.
It's one of those catch 22 situations. Fear of the dollar, which is up 1.9% over the euro -- the most since April -- ignores the good news that is reflected in a stronger U.S. currency - namely that the U.S. currency derives its strength from the U.S. economy.
Thanks go to Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, who reminded everyone during the G8 finance ministers meeting in Italy over the weekend that there is no alternative to the dollar as the primary global reserve currency. Ironic in a way, since Russia has made a big stink about the status of the dollar and joined China in calling for another benchmark.
Deal with it world. The dollar, like the U.S. economy, will not be defeated by the financial meltdown. If anything, the recovery that is underway proves the resilience of America.
As for the dip in oil prices to around $70 a barrel, that's really no big deal considering that oil kept on gaining and more than doubled since March despite declining overall demand. So a correction is overdue.
Too bad for the speculators who had been using oil as a hedge against more declines in the dollar that some thought would result from all the U.S. government stimulus spending.
And why is everyone so worried about the price of gold dropping to the lowest in three weeks? At more than $930 an ounce, the yellow metal is still comfortably ahead of the $695.40 an ounce we saw back in October.
Sadly, the spillover of these unfounded dollar concerns hit oil stocks like
along with mining companies like
Freeport-McMorRan Copper & Gold
and the SPDR Gold Trust ETF
a setback for nascent rally we had been seeing.
That knee-jerk reaction belies the fact that a resilient U.S. currency and economy bode well for continued consumption of gasoline during the summer driving period.
Worry not, however, because these market gyrations merely indicate that things are starting to return to normal.
No need to fear the strong dollar.
Glenn Hall is the editor of
. Previously, he served as deputy editor and chief innovation officer at
The Orange County Register
and as a news manager at
in Frankfurt, Amsterdam and Washington, D.C. As a reporter, he covered business and financial markets, worked in both print and television in the U.S. and Europe, and conducted in-depth investigative coverage at
in Fort Wayne, Ind. His work also has been published in a variety of newspapers including
The Wall Street Journal
The New York Times
International Herald Tribune
. Hall received a bachelor's degree in journalism and political science from The Ohio State University and a certificate in project and program management from Boston University.