Monday, April 12, 2010

Should I Invest or Buy Renminbi - RMB?

As you have probably known that China is one of fastest growing economic country in the world.  If not, why I want to say Chinese is the 21st century languge? So, now back to the question should you invest in Renminbi (RMB) or Chinese Yuan (CNY)?

Before we answer that, let's look at Chinese Yuan (CNY) or Renminbi (RMB) currency trend for the past 15 years. I plotted the Malaysia Ringgit (MYR) to RMB and you can plot it by yourself for your own currency. The trend should be around the same regardless of what currency you're comparing to.

What you can see here from the graph is the RMB has been staying flat since 1998 until today. Now we raise another question of whether the RMB will continue to be in flat? You may also wonder why the RMB currency is flat but on the other hand China is the fastest growing economic country?

Why RMB Currency is Flat?

It is probably due to the battle between China and U.S. both economically and politically. In fact the China government wants it to be this way so that they can keep exporting their stuff at the cheapest price to U.S. as compared to other countries (because other country's currency is appreciating). This leaves no choice for U.S. to buy or import stuff from China and not from other countries.

Imagine if China let RMB currency to be appreciated and U.S. used to buy a pen for US$ 1, now they have to buy a pen for US$ 1.50 from China. U.S. may switch to buy from other countries and China will lost their income (i.e. less in exportation). China doesn't want this to happen. So, what China does is to play around or manipulate their own currency by making sure it doesn't appreciate. Now we raise another question, is RMB currency under-valued?

Is RMB currency really undervalued?

If you ask China, China will tell you that RMB/CNY is NOT undervalued. Perhaps they don't want to let you know that they're manipulating the currency? The funny things is other than China, everyone seems to think RMB/CNY currency is undervalued. One of the obvious reasons is that RMB currency does not really appreciate in-line with China's economic growth.

So now U.S. is pushing China to revalue the RMB. Do you think China will revalue the RMB? If yes, do you think RMB currency will appreciate? For me, YES!!! If no, RMB will probably stay flat but will it appreciate in future? For me, YES!!!


In reality to answer all these question, there are no absolute answer and what I have explained so far is in the most simplest form. It is in fact a lot more complex than what I have explained. I'm also learning in progress. :) So all the questions that you have, eventually it is still back to you to make your own call. For example, should I invest in RMB currency? It is totally up to you.

Here are my answers:
Q: Should I Invest in RMB or CNY?
A: Yes, you should because RMB or CNY currency is currently undervalued.

Q: Why RMB or CNY is undervalued?
A: Because everyone "perceives" RMB or CNY is undervalued.

Q: Why everyone "perceives" RMB or CNY is undervalued?
A: Because RMB or CNY doesn't in-line with China's economic growth.

Hope these pretty common-sensed answers satisfy you especially you're a long-term investor like me. Don't wait anymore, go ahead to invest in RMB before it appreciates! Good luck!

p/s: I don't buy RMB directly but I invest in RMB by opening a foreign fixed deposit (FD) account though local bank. I find it is the easiest way to invest in Forex especially for long term investor like me.

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