Two interesting items in the Business pages of the Seattle Times today:
Foreign Exchange: Dollar Falls against Euro
The Associated Press reported that the U.S. dollar is now $1.3548 against the Euro ($1.35 = 1 Euro). Typically, since these used to be comparable currencies, the ratio was roughly 1 to 1, but now the gap is obviously increasing. Without being a professional economist, but with a pretty good background in basic economics, I’d say that this will spell trouble for the U.S. economy within the next year or so, especially if the U.S. dollar continues upward against the Euro. In broad strokes, this will affect foreign trade, and may force countries other than Cuba and Iraq to switch to a monetary standard that measures against the Euro. Both Cuba and Iraq have done this in the past — it will probably happen again.
Semi-related tangent: to my knowledge, any third world country that has switched to the Euro as a monetary standard has been targeted by the U.S. for terrorist actions.
Washington State Minimum Wage Rises
The Seattle Times reports that Washington State’s minimum wage goes up to $7.35 on January 1, making Washington the highest in the nation for minimum wages. Note: yes, that sentence is awkward, no, I don’t care.
This is important — though perhaps not positively important. The negative aspect is that companies will have to pay more to operate in this state, despite the clear positive benefit to Washington’s population. Ach, conundrums.