Greg Stohr and Phil Mattingly
April 4, 2010
U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner delayed a scheduled April 15 report to Congress on exchange-rate policies, sidestepping a decision on whether to accuse China of manipulating the value of the yuan.
Geithner in a statement yesterday urged China to move toward a more flexible currency and said a series of meetings over the next three months will be “critical” to bringing policy changes that lead to a stronger, “more balanced” global economy. The delay comes as Chinese President Hu Jintao is scheduled to visit Washington for a nuclear summit April 12-13.
The Treasury chief faces demands from Congress to label China a currency manipulator for keeping the value of the yuan little changed from about 6.83 to the dollar for almost two years. Geithner is instead betting that China will take steps on its own in the next several months to strengthen its currency, analysts said.
“There is pressure within China for a yuan revaluation and, as long as exports continue to rebound, there is a good chance that it will happen,” said Elizabeth Economy, director of Asia studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. “If, however, there is a lot of public pressure emanating from the U.S., that will likely give support to those in the Chinese government who do not want to see a revaluation.”