A Dow Jones Newswires column by Simon Constable stated:
The next nasty round in protectionism has now officially arrived.
It’s what Standard Chartered is calling “the great devaluation race.”
First off the starting blocks seems to be the Swiss National Bank, with its proclamation last week that it would cap any rise in the value of the Swiss franc.
The SNB announcement came together with a decision to slash interest rates to 0.25% from 0.5%. It was a move that seemed merely to confirm what many already believed: The Swiss have been in the process of competitively devaluing their currency for a while.
In January, one Swiss franc would buy about 94 cents, compared with about 84 cents more recently.
The Swiss have spun the line that last week’s move was to “cushion the effects of the economic and financial crisis,” according to a statement by the SNB.