Trading the yuan: Yuawn [economist.com]
IF HEADLINES translated into trading volumes, the yuan would be well on its way to dominating the world’s currency markets. It once again graced front pages this week after moves to lift its status in London, the world’s biggest foreign-exchange market. This was the latest instalment of a five-year-long public-relations campaign. Since 2009, when China first declared its intention to promote the yuan internationally, a string of announcements and milestones has cast the Chinese currency as a putative rival to the dollar.
The hype rests on several seemingly impressive numbers. Yuan deposits beyond China’s borders have increased tenfold in the past five years. The “dim sum” bond market for yuan-denominated debt issued outside China has gone from non-existence to a dozen issuances a month. And the yuan is the second-most-used currency in the world for trade finance.