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  • Roger S. Conrad

The International Scene

By Roger S. Conrad on Feb. 25, 2014

The strong US dollar has made it tough sledding for the stocks in our International Portfolio, though the recent rally in the Canadian dollar has provided a welcome tailwind for our Toronto-listed holdings.

However, the Aussie remains under pressure because of concerns about slowing economic growth in China and other emerging markets that import natural resources from Australia. (See Down and Out Down Under.)

Although we can’t say whether the Canadian and Australian dollars have bottomed, investors should remember that both countries’ governments remain in much better fiscal shape than our own. And the regulatory environments in Australia and Canada tend to favor energy companies and their investors.

At the same time, traders view these currencies as a proxy for China’s economic growth and appetite for commodities; as long as investor sentiment toward the Mainland’s economy remains negative the Australian and Canadian dollars could remain under pressure.

The silver lining: Investors who take a long view can buy shares of first-rate companies at a discounted price.

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    • Elliott H. Gue

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor

    • Roger S. Conrad

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor