January 18, 2011
In a Jan. 18 op-ed in The New York Times, “China’s Currency Isn’t Our Problem,” HLS Assistant Professor Mark Wu assesses the impact of the value of China’s currency, the renminbi, on the the American economy. Wu says that many Americans believe that “the Chinese jobs being preserved by an artificially low currency come at the expense of American jobs,” but he argues that a faster appreciation of China's currency will not lead to a dramatic increase in US jobs or exports, and he therefore asserts that concerns over China's exchange rate appreciation "should not take priority over more vexing issues like North Korea, Iran and bilateral trade."
An expert in international trade and intellectual property law, Wu joined the Harvard Law faculty in July of 2010. Prior to his appointment, he was an Academic Fellow at Columbia Law School, and he served as a Clerk to Judge Pierre Leval of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Wu is a co-author of “The Law of the World Trade Organization: Documents, Cases & Analysis” (West Group, 2010).
by Mark Wu
When President Hu Jintao of China visits Washington this week, many Americans will clamor for Beijing to stop manipulating its currency. We think we are being cheated on a huge scale, but we should reconsider. When it comes to lost jobs, the negative impact of China’s currency, the renminbi, is less than one might think. Adjusting the exchange rate should not take priority over more vexing issues like North Korea, Iran and bilateral trade. … Read the full op-ed on nytimes.com »