Morning Brief – US Dollar

US Dollar

 

The USD is more than buoyant on the back of the Federal reserve’s tough anti-inflationary talk and is at a 2 year high against other major currencies. The EUR is also suffering at the hands of a closer than expected French Presidential Election this weekend as we described on Wednesday. EUR/USD 1.0895.

 

US Solar Expansion

 

It has become clear if it was not sufficiently so before, that building solar farms of scale requires land-lots of it. The Solar Star Project in California which is one of the largest in the world has 1.7 million solar panels which take up over 3000 acres north of Los Angeles. 100 miles to the south, a natural gas power plant produces the same amount of energy in just 122 acres. This uncomfortable fact has given rise to a strong lobby against the use of so much land in rural areas and the construction of new solar farm sites. Currently solar contributes 3% of the US energy needs and in order to meet President Biden’s target would have to grow to 45% by 2050. To put that in perspective the US solar industry will need an additional area twice the size of Massachusetts which just to add to the mix will need to be flat, sunny (obv) and close to the transmission infrastructure necessary to connect the farms to the electricity grid. Before you reach for your Wikipedia, Massachusetts is 27,363 sq kms, so twice that is 54,726 sq kms or 13,523,088 acres of flat, sunny available land close to the grid needs to be made available to the solar industry which will then be covered in many black solar panels.

 

Canadian Dollar

 

As the Bank of Canada raises rates the expectation is for the CAD to strengthen over the next year to USD/CAD 1.23. As a producer of energy products which will inturn fuel income from exports, the Canadian economy looks set fair despite always being sensitive to the housing sector in an environment of rising interest rates.

 

Shanghai

 

When a city of 26 million people is locked down at short notice the economic effect is instantaneous but when a country the size of China is subject to restrictions, the economic effect is colossal. The last few days has seen the Qingming Festival which is the name given to the annual tomb sweeping time when relatives’ graves are tidied. Normally this gives rise to a large number of journeys and a spike in spending. However this time tourist spending has fallen by 30% down to $2.95 billion and the number of individual journeys has fallen to 75 million which is a drop of 26%. USD/CNY 6.36.

 

Santana

 

American supergroup Santana has enjoyed a long and successful career and this song released in 2000 almost exactly 31 years since their tour de force performance at the Woodstock Festival shows why. Here is Maria Maria:

 

Oh Maria, Maria
She reminds me of a West Side Story
Growing up in Spanish Harlem
She living the life just like a movie star
Oh, Maria, Maria (ayo, Maria)
She fell in love in East L.A.
To the sounds of the guitar, yeah, yeah
Played by Carlos Santana

 

Stop the looting, stop the shooting
Pick pocking on the corner (ah, yeah)
See as the rich is getting richer
The poorer is getting poorer (ah, yeah)
Se mira Maria on the corner
Thinking of ways to make it better (ah, yeah)
In my mailbox there’s an eviction letter
Signed by the judge, said, “See you later”

 

Ahora vengo mama chula, mama chula
Ahora vengo mama chula (East coast)
Ahora vengo mama chula, mama chula
Ahora vengo mama chula

 

Maria, Maria (West Coast)
She reminds me of a West Side Story
Growing up in Spanish Harlem
She’s living the life just like a movie star
Oh, Maria, Maria
She fell in love in East L.A.
I said to the sounds of the guitar, yeah, yeah
Played by Carlos Santana

 

Have a Great Weekend!

 

 

 

Discussion and Analysis by Humphrey Percy, Chairman and Founder

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